One way in which Sandia supports development of university faculty early in their careers is through nominations for the Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE).
PECASE is intended to recognize some of the finest scientists and engineers who, while early in their research careers, show exceptional potential for leadership at the frontiers of scientific knowledge during the twenty-first century. The PECASE is the highest honor bestowed by the U.S. government on these individuals.
Sandia’s parent agency is the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) of DOE. Individuals are nominated by directors of defense programs laboratories (Sandia, Los Alamos, or Lawrence Livermore National Laboratories) based on the candidate’s contribution to the DP mission. Candidates for this award must be PhD-level researchers employed as full-time laboratory employees or faculty at academic institutions who are in the first five years of their independent research careers (beyond initial postdoc) and whose research is funded directly by DP. They must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident. Individuals can receive only one PECASE award in their careers.
The awards are conferred annually at the White House. Each DOE/NNSA PECASE winner receives $250,000 over five years. This provides the awardee an opportunity to continue research in the area for which he/she was nominated and for the Laboratories to benefit from the results of the development.