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Oklahoma State University
High Performance Computing Center

A unit in the Division of the Vice President for Research

Juntos visits OSU HPCC

The Juntos ("Together") program at OSU creates positive and supportive environments for Oklahoma's Latino youth in order to increase their likelihood of high school graduation and enrollment in higher education. Each summer, Oklahoma middle school students who are enrolled in the program get to finish an eight-week academy by visiting the OSU campus. The students get to stay in student housing overnight and participate in educational workshops that provide them with a glimpse of what college life can be like for them. 

OSU chemistry professor Chris Fennell, who does computational chemistry research using the OSU HPCC's supercomputer Cowboy, was one of the faculty members who volunteered to teach a workshop this summer. After he and his graduate student assistants helped the Juntos students create their own molecules, he brought the students over to view Cowboy, where visualizations of their molecules were being processed.

While touring Cowboy, the students learned what a supercomputer was, how all of its nodes worked together to solve big problems - like their molecular visualizations - faster, and even a little bit about the maintenance of a supercomputer. When the students left the HPCC and returned back to the classroom, their visualizations on Cowboy had been completed and the students got to see them represented in 3-D through the Oculus Rift virtual reality headset.