|Mentor Jim Ahrens of Los Alamos National Laboratory meets with his protégé, Maria Ruiz, at SC14.|
Ruiz first met Ahrens at the Mentor-Protégé Program mixer held at the beginning of SC14. Ruiz said she was thrilled to have a mentor who is engaged with related research and understands it well enough to discuss advanced topics in the field. As her mentor, Ahrens was impressed by Ruiz’s enthusiasm and knowledge. He helped orient her to the conference and suggested names of people she should meet. Later that week, Ruiz attended some of Ahrens’ conference talks and followed up by sharing her resume, which led her to LANL this summer.
Because it’s difficult to find mentors in a specific field from outside of your university, Ruiz said that the SC Mentor-Protégé experience fostered new connections that will ultimately help her make a greater research impact and open up more opportunities in the future. From Ahrens’ perspective, the connection was a win-win, because he found a capable student for his summer program whom he may not have met otherwise. He felt fortunate for having the opportunity to guide Ruiz’s conference experience and is excited that she is planning to contribute to and participate in SC15 this year.
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