Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Make A Difference: Volunteer for the SC15 Mentor-Protégé Program

Mentor Jim Ahrens of Los Alamos National Laboratory meets with his protégé, Maria Ruiz, at SC14.
When you register for SC15, consider signing up as a mentor to help students get the most out of the conference and make a difference in their careers. Protégés are from the Student Volunteers, HPC for Undergrads, Student Cluster Competition and Doctoral Showcase programs. The suggested commitment for mentors and protégés is a pre-conference email or phone contact, attendance at the Mentor-Protégé Program Mixer from 3:30-5 p.m. Monday, Nov. 16, and another meeting during SC15.

Maria Ruiz
Thanks to the SC14 Mentor-Protégé Program, University of Delaware Ph.D. Student Maria Ruiz gained valuable experience by attending the 2015 Data Science at Scale Summer School at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL). Following that program, she was able to continue working with her SC14 mentor Jim Ahrens, who leads the Data Science at Scale Team in the Applied Computer Science group at LANL.

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.

For more specifics on getting involved, click here.

1 comment:

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