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NERSC Hosts HS Students on Job Shadow Day

Albany High-schoolers Learn About Careers in Computing

March 15, 2011

 As part of Albany High School’s annual Job Shadow Day, 19 juniors from the school spent several hours shadowing Berkeley Lab scientists, mathematicians, engineers, technicians and communications staff. Based on their choice of potential career paths, students were matched with mentors at the main Lab facility, NERSC in Oakland and the Potter Street biosciences research center.

Albany High's Darshan Parajuli (left) shadowed NERSC's Jim Mellander (right) for a first-hand view of what it's like to work in one of the world's preeminent scientific computing centers.

Here’s a list of the Lab staff and students they mentored:

  • Katie Antypas, Nick Cardo, Richard Gerber, Jason Hick and Jim Mellander of NERSC hosted Aaron Allen, Edward Gong, Dan Li, Darshan Parajuli and Patrick Xu at the Oakland Scientific Facility.
  • John Bell of the Center for Computational Sciences and Engineering hosted Jacob Martin.
  • Julian Borrill of the Computational Cosmology Center hosted Pike Goldschmidt.
  • Ron Zuckerman of the Molecular Foundry hosted Daniel Goldwyn.
  • Nelson Coates at the Molecular Foundry hosted Maddie Johnson and Juneyoung Jeong, 
  • Caitlin Youngquist in the Creative Services Office mentored Saskia Braucher.
  • Jon Weiner in Public Affairs hosted Lila Rosenfeld and Maya Braucher.
  • Dan DeBoer and Ed Tully of the Engineering Division hosted Tommy Babb and Freddy Sanchez.
  • Jonathan Slack hosted Daniel Xu in his EETD Lab. Xu also spent time with Andre Anders (AFRD), Sunnie Lim (EETD) and Rueben Mendelsburg (Materials Sciences).
  • Paul Ridgway of EETD hosted Zian Liu.
  • Kathleen Bjornstad of Life Sciences hosted Florence Liu and Melinda Lyall at the Potter Street Facility.

The matches with Lab mentors were facilitated by Jon Bashor of Computing Sciences and Jonathan Slack of the Environmental Energy Technologies Division, both of whom volunteered for the Job Shadow Day committee at the school.

"Thank you so much for making this Job Shadow Day possible. It was an amazing insight to a career I wish to someday pursue. Cait was a great person to shadow. It was awesome – it really inspired me,"
–Saskia Braucher, who shadowed Caitlin Youngquist in the Creative Services Office.

"It was such a positive experience to be able to get an up close look about things that we are seriously considering as professions. Everyone was so friendly and informative not only about what they do currently at the lab but they path that led them there. Thank you to everyone,"
–Lila Rosenfeld, who shadowed Jon Weiner, head of Berkeley Lab’s Communications Group.

“I had a really great time exploring the various jobs that are done in a world class laboratory. The environment was great, and the scientists that showed us around were great. We learned a lot about different aspects of computer science as well as electrical engineering, and sciences. The tutorials were engaging, and interactive; everyone got a chance to give insight on situations. Overall, the experience is great, and I would highly recommend the experience to others,”
– Edward Gong, who visited the National Energy Scientific Research Computing Center (NERSC) at Berkeley Lab’s Oakland Science Facility.
"It was really great—the  presentation was really informative and all of our questions were answered. I liked it that even though our time was officially over, everyone stayed late to keep talking with us,"
– Aaron Allen, who also visited NERSC.
“It worked out really well, as we were able to place almost one-sixth of all the participating students – 19 out of 120 – with Lab mentors... Not only were the students amazed by the breadth of opportunities up here on the Hill, but a number of parents also learned more about what we do here,” says Bashor.

About NERSC and Berkeley Lab
The National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC) is a U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science User Facility that serves as the primary high-performance computing center for scientific research sponsored by the Office of Science. Located at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, the NERSC Center serves almost 10,000 scientists at national laboratories and universities researching a wide range of problems in climate, fusion energy, materials science, physics, chemistry, computational biology, and other disciplines. Berkeley Lab is a DOE national laboratory located in Berkeley, California. It conducts unclassified scientific research and is managed by the University of California for the U.S. Department of Energy. »Learn more about computing sciences at Berkeley Lab.