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FYI Number 130: September 9, 2005

Important Letter from Ray Orbach: DOE Researchers and Hurricane Katrina

The following letter from DOE Office of Science Director Ray Orbach was received yesterday afternoon:

September 8, 2005

Dear Colleagues,

The devastating loss of life and suffering caused by Hurricane Katrina has shocked and saddened us all. Our thoughts are with those who have lost loved ones, homes, and livelihood.

We are writing to you as part of the DOE Office of Science family. Many have already begun to welcome into their institutions colleagues in the science community who have been displaced by the effects of the Hurricane Katrina. The Office of Science would like to help in the effort to ensure that faculty and students displaced by the disaster may continue their research and studies at other institutions.

The Office of Science has established a temporary program to match interested displaced students and faculty researchers - who may be eligible regardless of current DOE funding status - with research programs that currently receive grants from our office and that wish to host such displaced individuals. The Office of Science has set up a clearinghouse through DOE Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE) to match displaced individuals with host grant recipients, and will consider on a case-by-case basis modest supplemental funding to existing programs in order to facilitate this process.

For grantees wishing to host displaced individuals and grantees whose work has been affected by issues resulting from this disaster, the Office of Science will consider special needs requests for supplements to ongoing grants and field work proposals (FWPs). The fastest way to obtain information about a specific proposed activity is to contact the DOE Office of Science Program Manager responsible for the ongoing grant or FWP. If there is any question about whom you should contact at DOE Headquarters, feel free to contact Chris Yetter, who will route your inquiry to the right person. He can be contacted by emailing Christopher.Yetter@science.doe.gov or by calling (301) 903-4353.

Displaced students and faculty researchers from affected universities will be able to indicate their interest in being hosted by a current grant recipient and complete request for assistance forms on-line at the clearinghouse website. Office of Science supported Principal Investigators and Office of Science Program Manages will be able to log-in online to support and view the individual requests for assistance. All contact information for the students and faculty will be provided on the assistance forms which will enable timely contact with students and faculty by the potential host. We encourage interested individuals to visit the ORISE clearinghouse website at www.orau.gov/doeedrelief/ [note to readers: copy and paste this address]

Our colleagues in science have historically been a close-knit, generous community. This has been one of the joys of working in this community for so many years. I know that you will now want to reach out to those who have suffered from Hurricane Katrina and help them rebuild their futures.

Sincerely,

Dr. Raymond L. Orbach
Director, Office of Science
United States Department of Energy

Richard M. Jones
Media and Government Relations Division
American Institute of Physics
fyi@aip.org
301-209-3095

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