U.S. Army Research Laboratory Signs Partnership Agreement

ARL Taps Top Maryland Tech and Education Orgs. to Assist in Collaborating with Businesses, Universities, Researchers and Tech Workforce

July 31, 2015

Aberdeen, MD (July 31, 2015) – Representatives from the U.S. Army Research Laboratory will gather today with leaders from University Center, Northeastern Maryland University Research Park, Northeastern Maryland Technology Council and Susquehanna Workforce Network to sign and initiate a new agreement to forge a global collaborative network. This partnership will usher in a cooperative alliance between the organizations, enhancing access between government laboratories, academic institutions, small businesses, and industry. Today's education partnership signing ceremony will take place at University Center (formally known as The HEAT Center), located at 1201 Technology Drive, Aberdeen, Md., at 1 p.m. in Room 130.

"This new partnership is critically important for ARL and our new partners, because it solidifies our mutual commitment to advance scientific discovery and innovation for both the Army and the nation for decades to come," said Dr. Thomas P. Russell, director of the Army Research Laboratory. "Our new partners fully understand and appreciate the importance of maintaining our technological edge while providing unprecedented opportunities for students and others to explore STEM related objectives alongside us."

The five-year partnership between the consortium includes facilitating and supporting the development of ARL's Open Campus business model: facilitating and supporting information exchange between the parties on key academic research issues and needs; facilitating and supporting discussions between research institutions, the Maryland Higher Education Commission, and other key stakeholders, for the purpose of driving and enhancing studies in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) disciplines; supporting the development and expansion of STEM centered courses, collegiate majors, and technical careers; and leveraging pre-existing collaborative regional efforts in support of STEM educational goals benefiting students, government, industry and non-profit organizations.

"We are thrilled to be a part of this effort and to host the signing here today at University Center," said Nancy Spence, executive director at University Center. "This collaborative multi-partner signing event is the beginning of many exciting new ventures to help further ARL's mission, while providing both ARL and the region with what we do best—attracting and solidifying higher-education resources and providing training space and training needs for businesses and organizations both large and small."

ARL's Open Campus model leverages the expertise, capabilities, and facilities, like those of ARL and University Center, with mutual research interests that align with the technical strategy of ARL and the other partners. This Open Campus model was piloted in 2014 in Adelphi, Md. The model shows great promise for Aberdeen and the surrounding area due to the overwhelming positive response from the pilot program which includes more than 465 people "in and out of laboratory" environments, ten patent license agreements, more than 93 Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) projects, more than 70 new hires and more than $13 million in leveraged assets.

"It's an honor that we were chosen as one of the few partners to help facilitate ARL's goals of establishing an open campus in Northeastern Maryland," said Danny Demarinis, president of NEMD–URP. "Our role and mission in this partnership is to bring extra research capabilities and joint interests to the table to help our Soldiers and government contractors through our higher education and research resources."

ARL's joint value streams provided by Open Campus engagements include collaborative access to ARL's infrastructure, real data sets, expertise, generation of joint intellectual properties, incubation of new or start-up companies specializing in science and technological innovations, as well as developing an overall environment that encourages and drives the maturation and rapid transition of intellectual property in technologies to the industrial marketplace. This Open Campus concept provides advantages to organizations throughout the Northeastern Maryland area by allowing them to engage regularly with ARL scientists and engineers, who bring an understanding and perspective on complex, defense-relevant problems—giving businesses and students the ability to step into new roles as the next generation in the mission of national security. "By bringing together academia, industry, small business, and government for on-site R&D collaboration, it enhances the Army's research potential and gives us a hand in expanding our body of knowledge to maximize our potential to create the Army of the future," Russell said. "Open Campus will leverage the best and brightest across the collective research community to more effectively produce transformative science and technology to meet our nation's needs."

The 2015 Open House for the new Open Campus at Aberdeen Proving Ground (APG) is currently scheduled to take place November 3-4. The two-day event will feature a variety of scheduled presentations, tours and opportunities to meet with the Army's leading researchers. Attendees for this event will meet with top industry and academic innovators, such as: Academic Vice-Provosts for Research, Deans, Professors, Tech Industry Leaders and Managers, Tech Industry Businesses, Business Developers and Government Technical Research Laboratory Staff and Management.

Organizations interested in being a part of this groundbreaking collaboration must send contact information to opencampus@arl.army.mil.

About U.S. Army Research Laboratory (ARL)
The U.S. Army Research Laboratory is the nation's premier laboratory for land forces and is part of the U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command, which has the mission to develop technology and engineering solutions for America's Soldiers. RDECOM is a major subordinate command of the U.S. Army Materiel Command. AMC is the Army's premier provider of materiel readiness. If a Soldier shoots it, drives it, flies it, wears it, eats it or communicates with it, AMC delivers it. For more information, visit www.arl.army.mil, follow @ArmyResearchLab on Twitter and follow the lab on Facebook.

About University Center
University Center (UC) is a convenient, multipurpose, and tech-friendly facility used for business training and higher education located in the technology and economic growth center of Northeastern Maryland. UC partners with top universities and colleges including: Notre Dame of MD University, Johns Hopkins University, Morgan State University, University of MD College Park, UMBC, and Towson University. UC offers three bachelor degrees, one post bachelor certification, multiple engineering classes, nine master's degrees and one Ed.D program. Its tech-friendly facility is a valued resource to many businesses and government agencies needing to conduct training and hold small conferences in Northeastern Maryland. University Center is managed by Harford Community College and is housed in a County-owned building on State of Maryland property. For more information visit: ucmaryland.com.

The NEMD URP's mission is to create a multidisciplinary environment that strengthens national defense priorities through advanced degree opportunities, research and high technology transfer collaboration, critical-skill, top tier, knowledge worker education, specialty certifications and business/technology incubation and Small Business Innovative Research. For more information visit: http://www.nemd-urp.org.

About Northeastern Maryland Technology Council (NMTC)
NMTC connects the most successful technology companies in the world, hundreds of energetic growing enterprises, government and academic leaders into a collective force to accelerate economic growth and expand the STEM Educated Workforce in Maryland. Created in 1990, NMTC is Maryland's fast growing technology council with over 200 members and advocates providing access to technology, industry, academic and government leaders in Northeastern Maryland, the Greater Baltimore area and beyond. NMTC connects member companies, organizations and individuals to their peers and influential decision makers through power networking, informative workshops, monthly member's speaker meetings and other collaborative initiatives. For more information: https://nmtc.org.

About The Susquehanna Workforce Network, Inc. (SWN)
The Susquehanna Workforce Network, Inc., is a non-profit organization that executes workforce strategies that contributes to the economic competitiveness of the region. SWN is led by the regions Workforce Investment Board, which oversees, coordinates and plans workforce services in Cecil and Harford Counties. The Network co-operates three Susquehanna Workforce Center's in the region, collaboratively provides workforce attraction, retention and development services to the business community and facilitates the delivery of specialized workforce services to youth. For more information: http://www.swnetwork.org.


Last Update / Reviewed: July 31, 2015