Idaho State student Spencer Ercanbrack featured in international Nuclear News
November 30, 2020
POCATELLO – Idaho State nuclear engineering senior undergraduate Spencer Ercanbrack was featured on the cover and in a story in the November 2020 “The People of Nuclear” edition of Nuclear News.
Ercanbrack, a graduate of Marsh Valley High School and from the small community of Robin, wrote a first-person profile of his educational experience as part of a story titled “A Day in the Life: The Nuclear Community at Work,” which featured 30 profiles of people working within the nuclear community. Nuclear News is the flagship trade publication for the nuclear community and has nearly 11,000 readers throughout 54 countries. It has been published by the American Nuclear Society since 1959.
“It was an honor to be a part of the magazine and it was really fun, too,” Ercanbrack said. “I was proud to represent ISU.”
At ISU, Ercanbrack is an undergraduate research reactor senior reactor operator and research assistant. In his story, he recounts a typical busy day, which can include everything from attending classes and writing code as a research assistant, to running simulations and working on job reports. He also assists in a wide range of activities when a senior reactor operator is needed for the ISU Nuclear Engineering Laboratory’s research reactor.
“The remaining time in the day,” he writes in the article, “is spent on additional classes, homework and, time permitting, Netflix.”
Ercanbrack said he’d never written a biographical sketch like the one he provided for the magazine.
“I do a lot of different things and so my day-to-day activities can change a lot, depending on the day, so to try to capture it all in one piece was kind of hard, but it was fun,” he said. “It was a good exercise.”
After graduating next spring, Ercanbrack said he will pursue a master’s degree in nuclear engineering and he may also eventually pursue a doctoral degree in the field. He’d like to work at the Idaho National Laboratory because all of his family is from Idaho.
Ercanbrack says he is glad he made the decision to come to ISU to earn his undergraduate degree because the smaller size of the department has enabled him to build relationships with his professors.
“The professors know each of the students personally and they really care about us as people,” Ercanbrack said. “I have had so many opportunities thanks to the ISU nuclear engineering professors. They are really invested in our future and want us to succeed. It has made my experiences as a nuclear engineering