The New Mexico High School Supercomputing Challenge, co-sponsored by Los Alamos National Laboratory, is held each year to introduce students and teachers to high-performance computing and encourage students to pursue careers in math and science. Here, a winning team from Las Cruces presents President Clinton with Challenge T-shirts for his family as LANL Director Sig Hecker and CIC Division Leader Hassan Dayem look on.
The New Mexico High School Supercomputing Challenge is an academic program dedicated to increasing interest in science and mathematics among high school students by introducing them to high-performance computing. Established in 1990 by Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) and New Mexico Technet, Inc., the program has trained more than 3,300 students and teachers to use supercomputers for original computational science projects.

The Challenge is open to students from public, private, parochial, and home-based schools in all areas of New Mexico. Participating schools form teams of one to five students with a sponsoring teacher and a project advisor from a business, university, or research laboratory. Each team defines and works on a single computational project of its own choosing. Projects represent all areas of science and mathematics, with many teams choosing problems that impact their local environments.

Participants receive educational training at workshops, access powerful supercomputers, and tap the expertise of scientists and technical consultants who are available throughout the year-long program. The Challenge is both an educational program and a competition. Teams can compete for scholarships, savings bonds, and computing equipment for their schools.

LANL provides the supercomputers used in the program, which are networked by Technet for free state-wide access to participating schools. LANL also develops and implements the educational curriculum, provides volunteer instructors and team advisors, and sponsors the final judging and Awards Day activities. LANL and Technet are part of a partnership of New Mexico businesses, universities, and federal laboratories that sponsors the program.

For more information, see http://www.nm.org/challenge.html.

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