PSC offered students a variety of real-life, hands-on and skill-building projects during their internships this summer. A change from previous years’ internships, this year the students were able to present their research to members of the Carnegie Mellon community at a poster session for undergraduate students who conducted summer research in the Mellon College of Science (MCS).

“I had an unbelievable experience working at PSC this summer,” says Michael Ross, a senior majoring in cybersecurity at Bethany College.  “Andrew Adams (Principal Information Security Officer) and Shane Filus (Sr. IT Security Mgr.) were a huge help to me in explaining terminology, answering questions, giving me guidance where needed and keeping me interested in the work I was doing.”

Michael Ross

“Mentoring Michael this summer was a real boon for us,” stated Andrew. “He worked 100% remotely, but the work we asked him to do was conducive to that environment. For example, we had him research methods to develop cybersecurity-focused asset inventory solutions and then develop prototypes of those solutions. He completed the prototype of the asset inventory and helped us identify what we need to do at PSC to complete our implementation of DMARC.”

Michael says he learned so much from the research he did on the topic. “While I was focused on learning and documenting all that I could about asset management, I became, in general, more efficient and effective in doing research and writing reports,” he related.

Iman Jehanzeb

Iman Jehanzeb, a rising senior at CMU studying computational physics, worked remotely with Senior Computational Scientists Yang Wang and Mitchell Dorrell on a software installation management project for scientific applications on Bridges-2. “I enjoyed my work with Dr. Wang and Mitchell,” said Iman. “It was challenging, but I learned so much.”

“Iman was very enthusiastic about her project,” said Yang. “She actively participated in discussions and was proactive in finding help from other sources when needed. Iman implemented cmake to the MuST package. Although her tenure ended before she was able to build Docker images for the package and apply the experiences to the GROMACS package, her work greatly contributed to my NSF-funded project,” concluded Yang.

Dr. Yang, pictured here with Iman, as she describes the project she worked on during the summer to a group at the MCS poster session.

Fransiskus Agapa

Fransiskus Agapa, a rising junior in computer science at Seattle Pacific University, worked this summer with Research Software Specialist Ivan Cao-Berg on a HuBMAP project. Fransiskus’s project was to design and implement tools to streamline how data is submitted and processed for the NIH’s Common Fund Data Ecosystem (CFDE). The overall goal of the project was to automate the generation of big data bags that can later be used to build a submission for CFDE, potentially creating an automated workflow, minimizing human interaction.

“This was a great opportunity to get hands-on, real-life projects and work with a lot of data,” said Fransiskus.


During the MCS poster session, Fransiskus discusses his research with Amy Burkert, vice provost for education at CMU. 


Sheena Kapoor uses Bridges-2 for her research in the Chemical Engineering Department at CMU. “Being accepted as an intern in the Bridges-2 Netbox group was a perfect pairing,” she stated. “It was a great opportunity to enhance my programming skills in a professional environment,” added Sheena.

Sheena Kapoor

 Under the supervision of Ryan Sablosky (Virtualization Infrastructure Engineer), Sheena’s main project was a service that receives updates from our central hardware database and parses any changes that occur into a format our provisioning software and configuration management software can use.

“Sheena was a great intern,” recounted Ryan. “She was very driven, picked up new things quickly, asked good questions, and produced code that will be put into production on B2 and later centerwide. The service she wrote will help make provisioning and updating hardware across the center work more smoothly behind the scenes,” concluded Ryan.

Hind Albakri

“Hind Albakri’s project was to work on the Brain Image Library (BIL) to design and implement a REST API to share public metadata efficiently with our user base,” stated Research Software Specialist Ivan Cao-Berg. “She joined us later in the summer and will continue working on this project until December,” he added.

“I really appreciate the opportunity to do a second internship at PSC, especially to work with Ivan again,” exclaimed Hind Albakri, a University of Pittsburgh senior majoring in Astronomy and Mathematics. “Ivan is a very caring person.  He spends a lot of time with me, not just working on the BIL project, but he has helped me with my resume, my LinkedIn page, and enrolls me in workshops, lessons, and tutorials.  I am truly grateful for having him as a mentor and for the amazing environment PSC provides,” she added.

At the MCS poster session this summer, Hind described her work on the Brain Image Library. The goal is to improve FAIR (Findable Accessible Interoperable Reusable)ness by making the access to metadata user-friendly and programmatic.