Collaborating Organizations

Holyoke Codes is a collaborative partnership that involves a number of organizations and individuals. The breadth of this collaboration provides us with access to a broad range of talent and resources.

Massachusetts Green High Performance Computing Center

Renewable-Energy-Legos046Holyoke Codes works closely with the Massachusetts Green High Performance Computing Center (MGHPCC). Our workshops are held in their meeting room and utilize their laptops, tablets, and robotics kits. MGHPCC is acting as a fiscal sponsor for Holyoke Codes, enabling our organization to receive tax-deductible contributions supporting our workshops.

The Massachusetts Green High Performance Computing Center Inc. (MGHPCC) is a non-profit corporation jointly owned by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Boston University, Harvard University, Northeastern University and the University of Massachusetts system. The MGHPCC is dedicated to providing state-of-the-art, environmentally responsible infrastructure for research computing systems.

Today, virtually every scientific and engineering breakthrough relies on computation, as “in silico” experimentation and data analytics have become a powerful new tool for knowledge discovery, alongside theory and physical experimentation. Computers at the MGHPCC run millions of virtual experiments every month, supporting thousands of researchers in Massachusetts and around the world. The MGHPCC has received national attention for its ability to develop and operate efficient and flexible computational infrastructure on a scale that no single institution could have achieved on its own. The partnership that created the data center has served as a springboard for numerous collaborative efforts, including a university sponsored seed grant program to encourage multi-institution research collaborations, a jointly operated computer system dedicated to Life Sciences research sponsored by the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center, and the Mass Open Cloud initiative to develop a new approach to delivery of cloud computing services.

In operation since November, 2012, the 90,000-square-foot MGHPCC data center is located on an 8.6-acre former industrial site in downtown Holyoke, MA, and served by a municipal utility that derives more than 70 percent of its energy from local hydroelectric and solar resources. The facility was the first research university data center to receive LEED Platinum Certification, the highest level awarded by the Green Building Council, in recognition of the MGHPCC’s use of energy-efficient power distribution, advanced cooling techniques, low-impact stormwater management, and recycled building materials, among other measures.

The MGHPCC easily accessible via high-speed network connections. Each member institution has a 10 GB dedicated internet connection to its campus(es), and access for other institutions is available via Internet 2, the Northern Crossroads research network, the Massachusetts Broadband Initiative and commercial services.

The MGHPCC is a committed member of the community. The facility includes a multi-purpose meeting room that seats up to 80 people for courses and workshops, a hands-on lab and dedicated training space, a “sandbox” lab for non-production computing equipment, and a lobby exhibition area with a display wall highlighting computational science. The MGHPCC already has a track record working with local school systems and out-of- school-time programs to support and encourage both student and teacher interest in the fields of Computer Science and Information Technology, and STEM education in general. Such activities include hosting professional development workshops for teachers, after school activities for children, and full-day workshops, such as career awareness days and Girls Connect! robotics. These events are often in conjunction with the NSF-funded Commonwealth Alliance for Information Technology Education (CAITE), which works to increase the participation and success of underrepresented groups in information technology (IT) through a regional strategy.

The MGHPCC is an anchor institution in the Holyoke Innovation District, a local and regional task force that aims to catalyze the innovative and creative economy in Holyoke and the Pioneer Valley, in conjunction with the State’s initiatives for revitalization and economic activity in our Gateway Cities.

Girls Inc. of Holyoke

girls_inc_logoSince 1981, Girls Inc. has been the place in Holyoke for girls, by girls and about girls. Our mission is to inspire girls to be strong, smart, and bold by providing them with the opportunity to develop and achieve their full potential. We serve 1,740 Hampden County girls through direct programs, peer-to-peer education, and community outreach, helping them define and reach their goals, develop high self-esteem, and view themselves as community leaders. With Elementary School Programs (ESP) serving girls 5-12, and Middle and High School Programs (MHSP) serving girls 13-18, we offer programs in four key areas: science, technology, engineering and math (STEM), leadership and critical thinking, literacy and academic success and economic literacy. Our year-round programming takes place both after school and during the summer months.

Girls Inc. of Holyoke assumes that girls are interested in STEM. We encourage girls to make big, interesting mistakes, take healthy risks and solve problems. Our programs are designed to let girls learn to embrace their intellectual curiosity and to think like scientists. Computer science and information technology are a piece of the STEM education offered at Girls Inc. We know that teaching girls to code and create with and within technology will allow them to open doors to new opportunities in their education, their community, and their career paths.

Sweet and Fizzy

Sweet and Fizzy logo

Sweet and Fizzy Peter King and Lissie Fein, are a local graphic design and development duo specializing in educational content. They have close to 20 years experience making websites, museum exhibits, print collateral, logos, and motion graphics. They combine creative and technical skills in every project to create compelling work.

Commonwealth Alliance for Information Technology Education (CAITE)

caiteCAITE is based at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and works to address under representation in information technology education and the workforce. The project is active throughout the state of Massachusetts as part of the Expanding Computer Education Pathways (ECEP) Alliance. For more information on ECEP and its work across the United States, see ecepalliance.org.

Through its work in K-12 and higher education, CAITE’s mission is to broaden participation and success in computing and IT. Current efforts are focused on (1) curricula and standards in Mass. K12 public education; (2) professional development for educators; (3) youth programs to increase interest and career awareness; (4) educational pathways from community colleges to bachelors-degree institutions. CAITE identifies promising practices and disseminates, deploys, extends and institutionalizes these practices through work with in-state and national partners. CAITE and ECEP are funded by the National Science Foundation.

New England Regional Developers

NERD logoNERDs is a non-profit whose mission is to organize, educate and advance the skills of web designers and developers in the New England region. It seeks to do this primarily through nurturing a self-sustaining mentoring community for the local technology industry.

NERDs has identified and defined the major issues facing its community and industry today. The most visible symptom of these issues is the growing talent gap in the field of IT. NERDs believes that our IT teams are not as strong as they could be due to irrationalities lingering from society’s past. Using proven techniques to achieve better diversity and inclusion in IT, the NERDs project identifies areas of the population that have a harder time making it into IT careers and works to remove those challenges or barriers.