Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4 Page 5 Page 6 Page 7 Page 8 Page 9 Page 10 Page 11 Page 12 Page 13 Page 14 Page 15 Page 16 Page 17 Page 18 Page 19 Page 20 Page 21 Page 22 Page 23 Page 24 Page 25 Page 26 Page 27 Page 28 Page 29 Page 30 Page 31 Page 323 Now is the time to start planning for your future STEM career On May 18, 1980, the most destructive volcanic eruption in American history took place at Mount St. Helens in Washington state. More than two dozen bridges, 15 miles of railroad tracks and 185 miles of highway were destroyed. So powerful was the blast that it reduced the mountain’s summit from 9,671 feet to 8,363 feet. A thick layer of ash blanketed the air for thousands of miles, leaving the sky dark in the middle of the day as far away as Spokane, Washington. I was awestruck by this event as it played out on my television set. I wanted to know more. I took classes that taught me about the natural world. Eventually, I went to college and majored in geology. Looking back, I can say that Mount St. Helens is the reason I became a geologist and, eventually, director of the nation’s lead nuclear research and development laboratory. What intrigues you? Is there a hobby, subject or event that motivates you to learn more? What are you passionate about? The purpose of this brochure is to show you that dreams matter and to emphasize that every journey begins with a first step. You will read about some of Idaho National Laboratory’s best and brightest, folks who, like me, have the honor of working every day to develop the clean energy needed to power the future and safeguard national security. You will learn what motivated them to study nuclear engineering or chemistry or computer science and how these interests served as the launching pads for their careers. I hope the stories told here compel you to think about those things you care deeply about. Once you determine your goals, achieving them won’t be easy, but nothing worth doing ever is. Take school seriously. Don’t shy away from science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) classes. Understand what it will take to make your dreams come true. Then, go for it! The world is a blank canvas waiting for you to leave your mark and nothing is more powerful than one person in passionate pursuit of a dream. Not even a volcanic eruption that scorched 230 square miles of old growth forest, spread 540 million tons of ash over 22,000 square miles and released 24 megatons of energy. Mark Peters, Director, Idaho National Laboratory