The 2017 Vision Award was presented to the ASU LightWorks® Accelerator team by ASU's Knowledge Enterprise Development (KED). This award is given to a staff member or team who has demonstrated excellence in incorporating the vision and goals of ASU as a model of the New American University.According to KED, "The LightWorks® Accelerator team has exemplified the vision and goals of a New American University by leading a collaboration program with the U.S. Navy and six other universities titled NEPTUNE. NEPTUNE’s missions are to conduct cutting-edge energy research while engaging the veteran community at ASU to advance their career development." In a recent interview on PBS, Michael Crow explained the vision and goals of the New American University. “In the last 15 years, we have morphed ASU into a national prototype, into a new kind of university – one deeply committed to accessibility, while operating at academic performance," said Crow. "An institution that's focused on research to benefit the public and success of our country. Lastly, a university focused on the success and taking responsibility for the outcome of our community overall.” Travis Johnson, project manager at LightWorks, says, “The Navy-sponsored NEPTUNE program truly embodies the mission of the New American University by integrating veteran and active-duty students into research experiences and exposing them to potential employers.” The research done through NEPTUNE also advances economic development through spin-outs and tech transfer. “Engaging with the veteran community and enhancing their career trajectories is a critical economic, social and cultural boost to the local and national community," says Samson Szeto, communications coordinator at ASU LightWorks®. "We’re very proud to support a project that not only fosters new technology but provides skills and education to our veterans." According to former Marine Corps Sargent and Project Coordinator at LightWorks® Joe Sanchez, “What separates NEPTUNE from a traditional grant is its ability to provide ASU student veterans and active duty the opportunity to participate in research affecting today’s Navy and Marine Corps. It incorporates not only the education they are receiving but the skills and experiences they gained from their time in the service.” Please visit the NEPTUNE project page or contact Samson Szeto for more information.