Professors Enhance Curriculum, Student Workforce Readiness During SC07/Ohio Supercomputer Center Summer Program

Computational Science Workshop Draws Professors From Across the Nation, Puerto Rico

COLUMBUS, Ohio — June 13, 2007 -- Academia and businesses increasingly are using computational science to improve discovery methods and results. That’s why, to better prepare their students, 19 professors from the throughout the United States and Puerto Rico are attending a weeklong workshop at the Ohio Supercomputer Center that will teach them how to integrate the discipline into their undergraduate curriculums.

“Integrating Computational Science into the Undergraduate Curriculum Workshop,” June 17 to 23, 2007, is one of 11 hands-on, summer seminars on campuses across the country that address the use of computational science and cyberinfrastructure in education.

It’s part of the summer education series sponsored by SC07, an international conference sponsored by the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) and the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers Computer Society (IEEE) that showcases how high-performance computing, networking, storage and analysis lead to advances in research, education and commerce.

“Because computational science can solve complex business, technical and academic research problems with its computer modeling and simulations, it has become as important to scientific discovery as theory and experimentation,” said Steve Gordon, lead instructor for the workshop and director of the Ralph Regula School of Computational Science, an initiative of the Ohio Supercomputer Center.

“The diversity of the professors attending our workshop showcases the pervasiveness of computational science,” Gordon said. “Attendees represent a breadth of disciplines, including astronomy, chemistry, biology, pharmacy, engineering, computer science and natural sciences.”

While participants will prepare or adapt at least one instructional module and develop an implementation plan for their classroom during the workshop, they will receive continued support from a mentor to implement computational science in their classrooms during the coming academic year.

Rob Onyenwoke, a visiting instructor and the Marilyn Yarbrough Dissertation Fellow in the department of Biology at Kenyon College, said he’s attending the workshop to improve his breadth of knowledge in computational science, which will allow him to incorporate more cuttingÿedge technology and theory in his curriculum.

“I have a research interest in field of bioinformatics. An example would be using biological information such as genome sequences to answer questions pertaining to the biology of an organism,” Onyenwoke said. “I would like to incorporate more computational skills into some of the courses I will be developing in the coming years so that my students, and myself for that matter, will be better able to analyze large amounts of data/sequence, and then be able to design and execute experiments based on that analysis.”

Workshop faculty also will be eligible for internships with a variety of organizations participating in the SC07 conference, providing them opportunities to learn more about computational science and to present their projects and programs at this international meeting of high performance computing and networking experts.
SC07, the Ralph Regula School of Computational Science, and the Ohio Supercomputer Center sponsor “Integrating Computational Science into the Undergraduate Curriculum Workshop.”

Ohio Supercomputer Center: Celebrating 20 years of service, the Ohio Supercomputer provides reliable high performance computing and high performance networking infrastructure for a diverse state and regional community including education, academic research, industry, and government. Funded by the Ohio Board of Regents, OSC promotes and stimulates computational research and education to enable the state to achieve its aspirations in information systems and advanced technology and industries. For additional information, visit www.osc.edu.

Ralph Regula School of Computational Science: The statewide, virtual school focuses on computational science, or the use of computer modeling and simulation to solve complex business, technical and academic research problems. In collaboration with the Ohio Board of Regents, OSC, Ohio Learning Network and state colleges and universities, the Ralph Regula School ensures that Ohio has the skilled people needed to support the use of this new approach to innovation. For additional information, visit www.rrscs.org.