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Would you like to attend SC21 in St. Louis, Missouri (US) November 14-19 but lack travel support? The SC international conference series draws more than 10,000 high-performance computing, storage and analysis enthusiasts from around the world. While SC20 was totally virtual, SC21 will have both virtual and in-person registration options.
STEM-Trek Nonprofit will help 28* individuals attend SC21 via three contests: ScienceSlam@SC, our inaugural “Pathfinders@SC21,” and a special opportunity for early-career communicators! Three to eight-minute video submissions are accepted in the first two categories, and writing examples are required for the third.
Once again, cybersecurity thought leader and Toastmasters International enthusiast Mohamad Qayoom will serve as our host!
The “Pathfinder” contest welcomes career arc video testimonials from mid- to late-career research computing and data science (RCD) professionals. While examples at the above link are from a PEARC21 Cybersecurity Careers panel, professionals from all RCD fields and domains are welcome to participate!
Pathfinders video testimonial examples are found here; these were produced by speakers at the PEARC21 Student Program Cybersecurity Careers panel. Panelists were seeded with starter questions such as: As a child, what did you want to do when you grew up? Did familial, cultural, environmental or other factors influence your career trajectory? How did you prepare, academically, for your career? If you changed careers along the way, was it a person or situation that influenced your decision? What do you like most about your profession? What challenges have you overcome? Do you have advice for others who are just getting started?
The examples vary; Bryson Bort (Scythe) used a combined video with slides. Graphics add visual appeal that judges may like. But FBI Agent Frigm’s testimonial was casual, impromptu and recorded in front of his book collection which he talked about in his testimonial (as an undergrad, he was a history major!).
For both ScienceSlam and Pathfinders videos, content should resonate with a general audience; help them understand why will science and technology are important (targeting a 13-year-old’s level of comprehension). Once again, first-round judges will be elementary students; ScienceSlam and Pathfinder finalist submissions will be judged by a live audience on October 15.
Submissions are no longer accepted. Please note updates in red.
Ways to win:
- Two first prizes (one in each of the first two categories/ScienceSlam or Pathfinders) valued at $5,500: ($4,000 scholarly travel grant plus a full SC21 tech program waiver; including workshops and tutorials valued at $1,500);
Update: No submissions were received for the Pathfinders category, so only one first prize will be awarded for ScienceSlam.
- Two second prizes (one in each of the first two categories/ScienceSlam or Pathfinders) valued at $3,500: ($2,000 scholarly travel grant plus a full SC21 tech program waiver; including workshops and tutorials valued at $1,500);
Update: No submissions were received for the Pathfinders category, so only one second prize will be awarded for ScienceSlam.
- Two third prizes (one in each of the first two categories/ScienceSlam or Pathfinders) valued at $2,300: ($800 scholarly travel grant plus a full SC21 tech program waiver; including workshops and tutorials valued at $1,500);
Update: No submissions were received for the Pathfinders category, so only one third-place prize will be awarded for ScienceSlam. This prize has been increased to $1,000, and a fourth-place prize of $800 was added.
- Two early career communicator awards valued at $3,100: Seven nights lodging in Ubuntu House B&B* (valued at $800), $800 travel award, and full registration (media badge). Early-career research communications specialists are eligible. Those who are selected will be required to attend in-person, and provide media coverage for STEM-Trek’s event and SC (one full feature article with photos, video interviews, social media posts, etc. TBD with each specialist based on individual interests and strengths);
Update: No qualified early-career communicators applied, so we will be searching for candidates within a drivable distance to St. Louis who wish to experience SC – possibly for the first time. If you’re interested in participating, contact firstname.lastname@example.org with a letter of interest and link to writing samples.
- Five legacy prizes valued at $2,300: ScienceSlam@SC20 winners who can travel safely are offered SC21 registration waivers and seven nights’ lodging in UbuntuHouse B&B* valued at $800;
- Student awards valued at $500-$150: One grand prize ($500 travel grant, plus registration waiver), and 10-15* additional registration waivers awarded to others (number depends on cost/in-person vs virtual; age 21 and older). ONLY students who have been accepted for the SC21 Student Program are eligible; they should watch for more information from Students@SC21;
Update: No students applied for this award, so this funding will be reserved for a future event.
- Four merit prizes valued at $1,500: Submissions that do not place will be ranked; the first four will receive an SC21 tech program waiver; including workshops and tutorials valued at $1,500.
Update: In addition to the merit registration waiver award, contestants who submitted videos that didn’t win a 1-4 place prize will be awarded a $500 scholarly travel grant.
Many thanks to SC21 General Chair Bronis de Supinski (Lawrence Livermore National Lab) and Google for their generous support!
Submission and award guidelines
Video submissions should be between three and eight minutes long (no more or less). Content should be developed so that a general English-speaking audience will understand why science and technology are important to them (targeting a 13-year-old’s level of comprehension; so no science jargon, please!). Once again, first-round judges will be elementary students and STEM-Trek’s community of practice (social media); finalists will be judged by a live audience on October 15 (coordinates TBA here).
Files must be uploaded to YouTube by the author and made ‘public’ so that content can be shared by STEM-Trek and will be accessible to everyone (for no less than three years).
SC21 has both in-person and virtual options. Since scholarly travel isn’t advisable for many until all can be fully protected against COVID-19; the conference will follow strict COVID protocols. STEM-Trek will hold awards for beneficiaries until travel plans can be safely made. In lieu of travel, awardees may also opt to purchase a professional certification, pay tuition or academic fees. One SC20 beneficiary re-donated their award to a new organization that supports their discipline. Some shared theirs with resource-constrained individuals; tuition for online courses, etc. Beneficiaries can decide how and when to spend their award; any reasonable scholarly purpose is allowed.
Those who accept in-person registration waivers, Ubuntu House B&B* lodging and/or transit must be fully vaccinated and, just prior to arrival, and provide their vaccine card. UbuntuHouse B&B residents will also be required to sign a code of conduct. All who live within drivable distance to St. Louis are especially encouraged to participate.
* UbuntuHouse B&B is an AirBnB that we will temporarily ‘rebrand’ for this program (we have six single rooms/private baths and two community kitchens). The total number of students supported depends on virtual vs. in-person attendance; registrations differ in cost. If the conference moves to an all virtual event due to COVID-19, surplus funds that are not used for SC21 activities will be reserved for the next STEM-Trek program. If it’s necessary to cancel this reservation due to COVID, the lodging option will not be provided. Update: as of October 14 – we are keeping the UbuntuHouse reservation.