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Apply now to spend the summer supercomputing

The summer of 2016 will see a raft of summer schools and other initiatives to train more people in high-performance computing, including efforts to increase the diversity of HPC specialists with a specific programme aimed at ethnic minorities. But interested students need to get their applications in now.

In Europe, Prace, the partnership for advanced computing in Europe, is organising a training week, and a two-month placement at top HPC centres in Europe, for early-stage postgraduate and late-stage undergraduate students, in July and August. In the USA, doctoral students, postdocs, and computational scientists will have the opportunity to attend the Argonne training programme on extreme-scale computing (ATPESC), which will take place from 31 July to 12 August.

Also in the USA, the XSEDE Scholars Programme which will start in late May is directed at US students from under-represented groups, in particular African-Americans, Hispanics, Native Americans, and women. It will offer paid internships lasting a year as well as training opportunities.

Applications have already opened for the Prace Summer of HPC 2016 programme. In addition to the training week and two months’ placement, the programme affords participants the opportunity to learn and share more about HPC, and includes accommodation, a stipend, and travel to their HPC centre placement.

Up to 20 applicants from across Europe will be selected to participate. Two prizes will be awarded to the participants who produce the best project and best embody the outreach spirit of the programme. Participants will spend two months working on projects related to Prace technical or industrial work and produce a report and a visualisation or video of their results. The programme will run from 4 July to 31 August 2016, starting with a training week at the Juelich Supercomputing Centre in Germany, attended by all participants.

Previous experience in HPC is not required, as training will be provided. Some coding knowledge is a prerequisite but the most important attribute is a desire to learn more about HPC. A strong visual flair and an interest in blogging, video blogging or social media are desirable.

The Argonne programme is shorter and more intense, providing hands-on training on the key skills, approaches and tools to design, implement, and execute computational science and engineering applications on current supercomputers and the HPC systems of the future. The two-week programme will be held at the Pheasant Run Resort in suburban Chicago and is intended to fill the many gaps that exist in the training that computational scientists typically receive in their formal education or shorter courses.

There are no fees to participate, while US domestic airfares, meals, and accommodation will be provided. The deadline for submissions is 25 March.

The core curriculum will address:

  • Computer architectures and their predicted evolution
  • Programming methodologies effective across a variety of today’s supercomputers and that are expected to be applicable to exascale systems
  • Approaches for performance portability among current and future architectures
  • Numerical algorithms and mathematical software
  • Performance measurement and debugging tools
  • Data analysis, visualisation, and methodologies and tools for Big Data applications
  • Approaches to building community codes for HPC systems

The Extreme Science and Engineering Discovery Environment (XSEDE) is an integrated collection of digital resources and services -- a single virtual system where scientists can share computing resources, data, and expertise. Participants in the XSEDE Scholars Programme will learn more about high performance computing and XSEDE resources, and network with researchers and professional leaders. Scholars will receive a stipend of $5,000 and 30,000 computing service hours to work on an HPC internship for a year from the end of May.

Scholars will also receive travel grants to attend the two-week Blue Waters Petascale Institute at the NCSA at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in late May 2016 and the annual XSEDE Conference (XSEDE16) in July in Miami. They will also participate in at least six online technical training and mentoring webinars with other XSEDE Scholars. Applications need to be in by the beginning of February.

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