Holiday Week Update: HPC Community Funds Rich Brueckner Scholarship Awards to Goal – and Beyond

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Last week, we issued an update on a fund drive in memory of one of the HPC community’s most beloved figures, the late Rich Brueckner. We’re happy to report that many generous souls – many of them friends of Rich’s, no doubt – were spurred to drive the fund past its initial goal of $5,000. The fund, to be awarded to winners of a student cluster competition, currently stands at $5,500, and as organizer Dan Olds (see below) has said, more funds means more wealth shared among more students. No eulogy could more eloquently honor Rich’s memory than for our community to continue to give to the scholarship fund established in his name. Below is the story we ran on December 22.


The year 2020 will stand out in our memories, and sad to say, many of those memories are not happy ones. In the HPC community, this includes the untimely passing in May of Rich Brueckner, editor-in-chief of this publication and one of the most popular and respected people in HPC. With his dedication to this industry and his enthusiasm for the people in it, Rich was prominent in helping HPC flourish and thrive.

Now, in response to calls to give back to Rich’s memory, we are happy to report that the HPC community is contributing generously to the Rich Brueckner Scholarship Awards.  A GoFundMe account has been established by Dan Olds, principal analyst at Gabriel Consulting Group and longtime friend of Rich’s, to award two $2,500 scholarships to the outstanding male and female competitors at the Winter Classic Invitational Student Cluster Competition, organized by Olds and to be held March 15, 2021.

With a fundraising objective of $5,000, the fund now stands at $4,525, setting a healthy pace toward reaching its goal. But Olds, noting that the fund isn’t limited to $5,000, said, “If we raise more money, we will bestow more awards to more students.”

The Winter Classic Student Cluster Competition joins SC, ISC and ASC as the fourth major cluster competition held annually to support and mentor university students interested in HPC, AI and science-based computation. It also is the first competition to proactively recruit historically black and minority universities.

The Winter Classic will have a virtual format in which student teams remotely run their applications on vendor-provided hardware in vendor data centers. Applications for schools are available on the Winter Classic Invitational website, and prospective vendor sponsors can obtain more information by contacting the competition committee.

Olds, observing that Rich was a strong proponent of HPC education and of student cluster competitions, said, “Thank you for your help and support for this great cause. Rich is looking down and smiling right now.”