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Computational Research Division Hosts UC Merced Grad Students

April 25, 2018


UC Merced graduate students pose in front of the Cori supercomputer at NERSC during a recent tour. The interdisciplinary group, ranging from archaelogists to computer scientists, was hosted by CRD Director David Brown. Image: Margie Wiley

On April 19, a group of PhD students from UC Merced, all participants in the National Science Foundation’s Interdisciplinary Computational Graduate Education (ICGE) program, visited Berkeley Lab to learn about the many ways computing can be applied to research problems.

Computational Research Division (CRD) Director David Brown, who hosted the group, delivered opening and closing remarks. There were also talks from NERSC's Prabhat and CRD's Sean Peisert, Julian Borrill, Deb Agarwal, Mike MacNeil, Andy Nonaka and Silvia Crivelli. The group also took a tour of the NERSC computer room.

Brown and Deputy Lab Director Horst Simon serve on the advisory board for the ICGE program, which is now in its second year. The program is designed to enhance student success and reduce graduate student attrition rates in the computational sciences, particularly for underrepresented minorities and first-generation students, while fostering computational and data analytic skills within an interdisciplinary framework.

“Fifty percent of PhD students nationwide drop out, and that number is even higher among minority students,” said Prof. Marjorie S. Zatz, principal investigator for the UC Merced ICGE program and vice provost and graduate dean at the university. “By providing these opportunities and multiple mentorships, we provide a very safe environment for these students to learn and explore and manage interactions. It is a mix of learning coding, working on projects, successfully navigating through graduate school and moving into the business world.”

About Computing Sciences at Berkeley Lab

The Computing Sciences Area at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory(Berkeley Lab) provides the computing and networking resources and expertise critical to advancing Department of Energy Office of Science (DOE-SC) research missions: developing new energy sources, improving energy efficiency, developing new materials, and increasing our understanding of ourselves, our world, and our universe. ESnet, the Energy Sciences Network, provides the high-bandwidth, reliable connections that link scientists at 40 DOE research sites to each other and to experimental facilities and supercomputing centers around the country. The National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC) powers the discoveries of 7,000-plus scientists at national laboratories and universities. NERSC and ESnet are both Department of Energy Office of Science National User Facilities. The Computational Research Division (CRD) conducts research and development in mathematical modeling and simulation, algorithm design, data storage, management and analysis, computer system architecture and high-performance software implementation.

Berkeley Lab addresses the world's most urgent scientific challenges by advancing sustainable energy, protecting human health, creating new materials, and revealing the origin and fate of the universe. Founded in 1931, Berkeley Lab's scientific expertise has been recognized with 13 Nobel prizes. The University of California manages Berkeley Lab for the DOE’s Office of Science. The DOE Office of Science is the United States' single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, please visit science.energy.gov.