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HPC Associate Degree Program Blazes New Trail in Waco

To me, the future of HPC isn’t so much about chips and servers as it is about educating the next generation. That’s why one of my favorite parts of the SC conference is the Education Program that immerses undergraduate faculty and pre-college educators in high-performance computing, networking, storage and analysis.

Now students at Texas State Technical School Waco have a chance to get supercomputing chops in short order. TSTC is one of just two schools in the entire nation to offer an associate degree in high performance computing. HPC Department Chair Walton Yantis, who also developed the curriculum for the program, said the first thing he looked into was the job market for HPC technicians.

The program is industry-driven and students had an interest in it, but one of the things I had to look at before pursuing it was whether there are jobs out there,” Yantis said. “After looking at some National Science Foundation reports and talking with companies who are branching into HPC, I concluded there would be around 70,000 jobs available for HPC technicians in 2010. Further research led me to find that there are very few technical programs for high performance computing.”

According to Yantis, most people entering the HPC field are learning on the job. TSTC students should have a leg up on these kinds of positions.

Read the full article from TSTC Tech Times online.

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