The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) recently held a Research and Development (R&D) Day at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign (UIUC).
The event was designed to bring students, faculty and USACE employees together to discuss research, employment opportunities and collaboration with the Corps of Engineers. Keynote speakers included Dr. Enrique Matheu, executive director of USACE R&D; Dr. Ty Wamsley, director of the U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center’s (ERDC) Coastal and Hydraulics Laboratory; and Dave Bucaro, chief of planning for the USACE Chicago District.
“This has been a great opportunity to sit down and get to know each other,” said Dr. Andy Nelson, director of the ERDC’s Construction Engineering Research Laboratory. “It has been great to connect, learn and to seek partnership.”
Initially organized to strengthen the relationship between USACE and the university, the event also helped raise awareness of the USACE top 10 R&D priorities, as well as increased visibility of collaboration opportunities for the faculty and professional growth opportunities for UIUC students.
Breakout sessions were held for participants to hear from experts in their fields and learn about the various USACE research projects currently in development. Researchers covered a variety of topics from novel materials and applications to infrastructure monitoring and risk.
“The success of today will have long term positive impacts on ERDC and USACE,” said Dr. Nelson, who added that the event was a great experience for everyone involved.