Preparing for Parallel Environments from a Student's Perspective

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At SC10, a BoF called called Preparing for Extreme Parallel Environments featured some of the industry’s thought leaders in a thought-provoking discussion on how industry and academia can prepare for a parallel world. Intel’s Abi Sundaram attended the session and she came away with some key lessons for computer science students trying to compete in today’s job market:

Every student (including me!) upon graduation hopes their University has prepared them with all the skills to beat out the applicant sitting next to them for a job. Before joining as an intern with the Intel Academic Community, my conception of parallelism was to the say the least hazy. It was something I had at some point heard in lecture and buried far in the back of my brain in case I had to define it on a test sometime in the future. Through my time as an Intern my relationship with parallelism has become, for lack of a better word, intimate. With more and more manufacturers shifting towards many-core platforms, parallelism is making a strong presence in today’s computer industry and, whether I liked it or not, it was a change I, and all computer science students, will have to reckon with.