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Building Sustainable & Inclusive Collaborations in the Field of HPC

early career

With a strong industry background, Stephanie Dempsey currently is a software test engineer at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL), where she focuses on utilizing software testing frameworks and continuous integration tools in HPC environments. Moreover, as this year’s Early Career Chair, she intends to help guide participants as they navigate a successful career path by organizing series of workshop-style sessions and pre-conference webinars on topics of funding, mentorship, self-promotion, communication skills, and others. Applications to participate in the SC23 Early Career program will be accepted through July 31, 2023.

Early Career Support

The Early Career program is intended for people still starting their computing career journey and is designed to prepare participants for significant contributions in their chosen career paths. Early Career encompasses panel sessions, hands-on activities, and pre-conference webinars with the goal of enhancing participants’ skills pertaining to funding opportunities, publication venues, mentor relationships, resiliency, communication, and time management.

The program will feature networking opportunities with the panelists from industry, academia, and government labs, who will share their expertise and discuss what it takes to succeed in a chosen career path. Ultimately, these exchanges are expected to encourage participants to continue seeking broader engagement and find their own place within the HPC community. Here, Stephanie shares her perspectives on what it means to say, “I AM HPC.”

Stephanie Dempsey

Software Test Engineer, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

Q: What single event most made you realize you wanted a career in HPC/computing?

Stephanie: There was no single event that led me to a career in HPC. I worked in private industry for several years and found the tech industry to be exciting in general, but it was after coming to LLNL and working in the WSC [Weapons Simulation and Computing] division on the supercomputers that I became hooked on HPC. The work is always challenging, the problems are world-class and meaningful, the collaborations have been exciting, and the people in the HPC community are inspiring.

Q: What do you consider your biggest contribution to the HPC/computing community?

Stephanie: My career journey is unique in that it has spanned from large tech companies to startups to research.  It’s been a path of making choices about how, when, and why I work. Building relationships is a valuable part of my work-life experience, and the collaborations provided in the HPC environment and community have provided me with the best opportunities to grow professionally and personally. As the Early Career Chair, I want to bring a focus on inclusivity and relationship building as it pertains to successful collaborations in one’s career. 

Q: What would you like to see change about, within, or among the HPC/computing community?

Stephanie: It’s been proven over and over that inclusivity and psychological safety are keys to building great collaborations and successful teams. I would like to see how investment in these areas will change work-life experiences to enable more individuals to contribute to the amazing science enabled by HPC.

Accepting Applications

If you’d like to receive guidance on how to navigate your career, Early Career is accepting applications through July 31.

If you have questions about Early Career applications, please contact the program committee.

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