The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) JUMP into STEM competition encourages students with a passion for science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) to share solutions for several challenges facing the building science industry. JUMP provides a platform for students to use their unique problem-solving skills and ideas to develop holistic solutions. Winners are awarded paid, 10-week summer internships at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) or Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL).

In February, 2020 winners Jai Huntley, Kira O’Hare, and James Whitfield were looking forward to spending 10 summer weeks in Colorado doing research at NREL. Their mentors were identifying tasks that would provide a learning opportunity to make a real contribution to building science research projects. Huntley, O’Hare, and Whitfield were three of the more than 200 student interns that NREL planned to welcome for the summer.

Undaunted by the shift of JUMP into STEM’s summer internship programs to a virtual experience, NREL staff members were committed to providing a meaningful virtual opportunity for interns. The students were committed to learning about building technologies and contributing to their assigned research projects.

Read more about the students at