Jordan Kultgen of Aurora was one of 60 high school students attending the Joint Science and Technology Institute, an educational opportunity to expand his knowledge and experience in science, technology, engineering and math.

Kultgen collaborated with scientists and conducted research activities in laboratories at the U.S. Army Edgewood Chemical Biological Center, the Army Research Laboratory or Harford Community College in Maryland. Projects included robotics, environmental water quality, microbiome-based antibiotic discovery and 3-D printing and design.

The educational program, held July 21 through August 3, was a fully funded research opportunity for high school students from the United States and from U.S. Department of Defense schools around the world. It was sponsored by the Defense Threat Reduction Agency and managed by Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education. The programs helped students gain confidence in their own abilities, provided an awareness of career options and encouraged pursuit of STEM careers.

“By immersing them in STEM activities in professional lab environments, they became excited about science and felt encouraged to investigate STEM career opportunities,” said ORAU section manager Marie Westfall.

For a complete list of JSTI participants visit,


The Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education is a U.S. Department of Energy asset that is dedicated to enabling critical scientific, research, and health initiatives of the department and its laboratory system by providing world-class expertise in STEM workforce development, scientific and technical reviews, and the evaluation of radiation exposure and environmental contamination.

ORISE is managed by ORAU, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation and federal contractor, for DOE’s Office of Science. The single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States, the Office of Science is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, please visit