High-Performance Computing (HPC) has become an indispensable tool for scientists working in theoretical, experimental, and data science. To help build a vibrant and inclusive community of researchers in all of these disciplines, the Oak Ridge Leadership Computing Facility (OLCF) has invested in a series of programs and opportunities.

From internships, to workshops, training events, and seminars, the OLCF is working to provide educational and professional opportunities to introduce new scientists to HPC and to the OLCF’s leadership-class machines. These activities are designed to remove barriers to fully realizing the potential of large-scale parallel systems and to engage a broader user community in HPC.

Below are three foundational HPC programs for consideration.


Pathways to Supercomputing Initiative

The end of the first row of Frontier cabinets showing the Frontier logo.The Oak Ridge Leadership Computing Facility (OLCF) has launched a new initiative to assist researchers and institutions currently underrepresented in high-performance computing (HPC), equipping them with the tools and resources needed to develop competitive allocation proposals and providing a pathway to the OLCF’s user programs, including the Director’s Discretionary, the Innovative and Novel Computational Impact on Theory and Experiment (INCITE), and the ASCR Leadership Computing Challenge (ALCC) programs. The initiative is open but not limited to community colleges, historically black colleges and universities, Hispanic-serving institutions, and liberal arts colleges. If selected for the Pathways to Supercomputing initiative, you will receive a startup allocation on the center’s IBM AC922 Summit or Frontier exascale supercomputers, and other OLCF resources, as well as mentoring from OLCF staff to design an experimental campaign with the goal of submitting an allocation proposal at the end of the startup period.

For more information regarding eligibility or for details about how to apply, please click the “Pathways to Supercomputing Interest Form” drop-down below and submit the form.

Pathways to Supercomputing Interest Form

Pathways to Supercomputing Partners

  • Dr. Ram Mohan at North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University
  • Dr. Kedan He at Eastern Connecticut State University

Hands-On HPC Crash Course

The OLCF has developed a virtual (2- or 3-day) crash course for high-performance computing (HPC) that covers the foundational skills needed to start learning about HPC (e.g., ssh, Linux command line, command-line text editors, introductory C programming) before moving on to the basics of HPC itself. The courses are hosted virtually on Zoom and make use of Slack for hands-on help during the exercises.

We invite organizations who want to partner with us to begin by encouraging their students to take this virtual HPC crash course. This is not a prerequisite for the other programs listed here but rather a good way to start learning about HPC and the resources available at the national laboratories.

The Hands-On HPC Crash Course will be offered periodically throughout the year and also for specific audiences on demand. If you are interested in hosting a Hands-On HPC Crash Course at your institution or event, please click the “HPC Crash Course Interest Form” drop-down below and submit the form.

HPC Crash Course Interest Form


Are There Prerequisites for the Crash Course?

Participants will need to have internet access and a local computer (e.g., laptop, desktop) they can install an ssh client on. They will also need to be able to run Zoom and Slack on their local computer – which can either be done through desktop clients or a web browser.

What Happens During the Crash Course?

During each day of the course, OLCF staff will cover a set of topics related (or foundational) to HPC, where each topic consists of a lecture and hands-on examples. Participants will be supported by OLCF staff during the hands-on component using Zoom + Slack.


“The Hands-On HPC helped a lot. It provided a very clear set of concepts for parallel computing. From my learning there I was able to go to OLCF’s other recorded trainings and keep learning. I liked the range of simple to complex tasks provided and the mentors on slack really helped.”

~Toya Acharya, Electrical Engineering Graduate Student (Prairie-View A&M University)

Pathways to Computing Internship Program

The Pathways to Computing Internship Program (PCIP) at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) is a 10-week summer program that provides undergraduate students with learning opportunities in computer science, computational science, and computational mathematics. Students will be mentored by ORNL research and technical staff members and will be able to make contributions to projects in diverse computing areas, including in computer science, high-performance computing, system administration, and more.

The goal of the program is to improve opportunities and encourage applications from underrepresented groups in the computing field; however, all eligible candidates are encouraged to apply. In addition, students will gain valuable skills needed for a successful career in computing fields. Selected interns will have access to ORNL’s leadership-class facilities, including Summit, the most powerful supercomputer in the US.

For more information and to apply: https://education.ornl.gov/pcip/. If you have any questions, please contact pcip@ornl.gov.