Find tomorrow’s research leaders—today

The P3 Program is a novel model for building alignments and relationships between university research and the industrial sector. It is a student-centered graduate training program meant to attract the best, highly motivated students. Operationally, the program is based on shared commitments from sponsoring companies, Lehigh faculty members, and the University itself, in the support and development of participating students.

Broad technological challenges faced by the company become the context of graduate training and the source of research questions to be explored in the Fellow’s dissertation.  As with any doctoral program that attracts highly talented students and provides financial support, faculty mentors are motivated to align their research with student interests, providing a conducive environment for downstream partnership.

The P3 Program is an experimental model for graduate research and training, with evaluation and validation supported by the National Science Foundation Innovation in Graduate Education program.  Lehigh is serving as a model for other institutions in preparing a doctoral workforce ready and able to contribute to modern U.S. industry while nurturing productive relationships between corporate needs and innovative university research.


P3 Industry/National Lab Partners:
Corning Inc. ; Michelin, Inc.; Brookhaven National Laboratory; Oakridge National Laboratory;
GTI Energy; NASA; Air Force Research Laboratory


Benefits to partnering firms include:

  • Advanced graduate level R&D and training of scholars on topics of strategic significance to the company;
  • Development of knowledge related to new methods, devices, products and expertise relevant to the company’s technologies;
  • Access to R&D-ready potential employees with skills in areas of strategic interest;
  • Summer Graduate Intern ready to undertake in-depth, high-level evaluation of a technical issue of broad interest to the company;
  • 6-12 month Graduate Resident (similar to medical residence in hospitals) effectively functioning as a company scientist-in-training;
  • Active partnership with expert faculty on the topic of the Fellow’s dissertation topic, plus access to researchers driving progress in related topics at Lehigh and partner national labs.


From a P3 program Industry Partner:
“Weʼre excited to help catalyze the P3 program,” says Gary Calabrese ʼ79, senior vice president
of global research at Corning, which is sponsoring one of the pilot fellowships. “We conduct use-
inspired research every day, gaining knowledge that allows us to invent new products. Bringing
PhD students into the process will allow them to be more mindful of the relevance of their work
and its impact.” From Blazing new trails in graduate education

To inquire about becoming a project industry partner, email