Sean McDeavitt, Ph.D.
Executive Director, Nuclear Power Institute
Professor, Department of Nuclear Engineering
My name is Sean McDeavitt. I am a professor in the Department of Nuclear Engineering at Texas A&M University and have been a leader in engineering research related to nuclear fuels, waste, and materials processing for over 25 years. I am also the Director of the Nuclear Engineering & Science Center (NESC), which is a multifaceted center with several divisions. One of these divisions is the Nuclear Power Institute (NPI) and I am the Executive Director of NPI as well. As the Executive Director of NPI, I am leading an expert team to develop a network of engagement between k-12 students in the State of Texas and higher education and professional opportunities. As the Director of the NESC, I also lead a team to manage and operate two licensed nuclear reactors (a 1 MW TRIGA and a smaller 5W AGN reactor) as well as various research facilities. These research facilities include 1) the Fuel Cycle & Materials Laboratory (FCML) where nuclear fuel and waste processing methods are studied, 2) laboratory space near the TRIGA reactor where isotope production, radiochemistry, and nuclear science research are performed. Before coming to Texas A&M in 2006, I was a staff engineer and then Section Manager in the Chemical Technology Division of Argonne National Laboratory.
Valerie G. Segovia, Ed.D.
Director, Outreach & Education, TEES Nuclear Engineering & Science Center
Director, Nuclear Power Institute
Dr. Valerie G. Segovia is the Director of outreach and education for the Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station’s Nuclear Engineering and Science Center (NESC) and Director of the Nuclear Power Institute (NPI). In her roles, Segovia works with the NESC Director to manage, expand, and direct all NESC outreach and education programs. As NPI Director, she creates, manages, and directs programming focused on the NPI workforce development mission while supervising all NPI staff.
Segovia began her career with NPI over a decade ago and has created innovative programs that have been implemented across the State of Texas, including two NPI flagship programs, Powerful Opportunities for Women Eager and Ready for Science, Engineering, and Technology (POWER SET) and Workforce Industry Training (WIT). Traditionally, only 15%-17% of U.S. high school graduates pursue a STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) college degree. However, through Segovia’s leadership, an average of 75%-80% of graduating high school students who participated in NPI programs have pursued a STEM degree over the past decade. She is also a content creator and producer of the NPI Podcast, “The Path of Most Persistence.”
Dr. Segovia holds a bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies, two master’s degrees: in counseling and administration and supervision, and a doctorate in educational leadership.
Travis Burks, M.Ed.
Program Specialist III, Nuclear Power Institute
Howdy! My name is Travis Burks and I am excited to have joined the NPI team February 2020. I have been working in the recruiting, outreach, and student retention area for the past three years with the Texas A&M College of Geosciences. However, my educational background is in communications from Texas A&M where I received my both my bachelor’s and master’s degrees in the communications area through the College of Agriculture. A goal of mine for this position is to increase the communications efforts and content that can be distributed and help our outreach efforts. Outside of work, I have a wife, a dog, and a new baby!
Business Coordinator II, Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station
Howdy! My name is Yazmin Esqueda. I am a graduate of Texas A&M University and recently joined the Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station Fiscal Office. I am thrilled to support the efforts of the Nuclear Engineering and Science Center and the Nuclear Power Institute. I strongly believe that the work the team does daily has a huge impact on the industry and most importantly on the leaders of tomorrow. I feel very lucky to have joined such a wonderful team!
Some hobbies of mine include reading, spending time outdoors, and learning new skills.
Program Specialist II, Nuclear Power Institute
Howdy! My name is Adrianna Garcia and I am excited to join the NPI team, January 2022, as a Program Specialist II . I graduated from Sam Houston State University with a degree in Interdisciplinary Studies and have been teaching for the past year and a half. I have a true passion for education and am thrilled to be able to share that with the NPI team. Outside of work I enjoy spending time with my family, fiancé, and puppies.