Get Involved with ACCESS

By ACCESS Team

Every day is a great day to consider getting involved with ACCESS! Being a part of ACCESS will give you a unique experience, allow you the opportunity to network with other researchers and give you the opportunity to discover valuable insights on how to get your own research project rolling. Getting involved is easier than you may think.

Each of the hardworking teams at ACCESS is doing their part, but we can always use more help and expertise from volunteers. In fact, there are a number of areas where our helpful expert volunteers are essential to a smooth process. We’ve spoken with each team to get all the details on how you can join the ACCESS team.

Allocations

The allocations team has one of the largest networks of volunteers at ACCESS. Allocations is responsible for reviewing all the allocation requests that come through ACCESS and finding the right resources for researchers. The allocations team will train all volunteers and guide you through the process.

Volunteering with Allocations will put you on the AARC team, or the ACCESS Allocation Review Committee. The AARC is composed of volunteer experts from the faculty and staff of U.S. universities, laboratories, and other non-profit and commercial research organizations. All members have expertise in at least one area of computational science or engineering and serve a term of approximately three years, with the possibility of a one-time renewal. PI and co-PIs of ACCESS allocation awards may serve on the AARC. The AARC reviews requests for the Maximize ACCESS Accelerate ACCESS opportunities. You can sign on to review either or both types of proposals.

The Allocations team is looking for a diverse group of reviewers and is interested in experts from all disciplines, including social sciences, digital arts and humanities, and STEM fields. Find more information on how to volunteer for Allocations and what kinds of benefits and experiences you can expect working with that team here.

Providing constructive and insightful feedback within merit reviews of allocation requests is an impactful way for computational experts to contribute to the goals of the ACCESS ecosystem.

Stephen Deems, principal investigator, ACCESS Allocation Services

Metrics

Metrics is always looking for software developers and welcomes third-party collaboration. This team works with ACCESS XDMoD, which is built upon the open-source collaborative Open XDMoD software. ACCESS XDMoD stores information about the usage and performance of ACCESS resources and allows users to create reports based on this data. The information goes back to 2004 and has hundreds of gigabytes of historical data on cyberinfrastructure usage. Running reports on this software will allow researchers to create custom reports about their work for their teams and stakeholders. If you’re a developer interested in helping with bug fixes or adding features, you can put in a pull request on GitHub.

Metrics is also in charge of developing a data analytics utility that will give researchers access to the XDMoD database. They’ll need beta testers and partners who wish to collaborate on research projects in order to make the application as useful as possible to researchers. You can contact Metrics directly if you’re interested in helping out in these areas. Find more information about getting involved with the Metrics team here.

Operations

ACCESS wouldn’t exist without the Resource Providers lending their cyberinfrastructure (CI) to the project. Resource Providers are projects or organizations that provide CI services to the science and engineering community. If you have a resource you think researchers would benefit from inclusion in ACCESS, start here and join the Resource Provider Forum. 

In early November, the Operations team will also start the Student Training and Engagement Program (STEP). This program is hosted by CONECT (COre National Ecosystem for CyberinfrasTructure) and works to further community engagement, education and training efforts. The STEP program will provide students with training on marketable skills in the areas of operations, data and networking, and cybersecurity. STEP will focus on providing these opportunities to traditionally underrepresented groups to improve the diversity of the ACCESS program. You can read more about CONECT and STEP here. We’ll also announce on the main website when this program goes live.

There is no more exciting time in a project than at the beginning!  The newly formed ACCESS team is eager to expand its list and variety of Resource Providers and diversify our portfolio for the betterment of the research community.  While the researchers are doing their amazing work, it is up to the Resource Providers to enable stability and provide confidence. 

Tom Maiden, ACCESS Resource Provider Coordinator

Support

Support has two programs you can get involved with if you’re interested in helping ACCESS. MATCHPlus provides direct support to researchers to move their science forward through concrete and contained computational improvement such as expanding existing code functionality, transitioning from lab computers to HPC, or introducing new technologies into their workflows. MATCHPlus launches short-term engagements that pair a student facilitator with an experienced mentor to address an immediate research need. Mentors are ACCESS Computational Science and Support Network (CSSN) experts with subject matter expertise and professional facilitation skills relevant to the engagement.

For MATCHPlus, support is looking for volunteer mentors and student-facilitators. Mentors help student research facilitators, advance scientific breakthroughs and help drive evolving and emerging research. Student-facilitators gain cutting-edge research experience, help drive scientific research and they are given the opportunity to showcase their expertise and learn new skills. You can learn more about the MATCHPlus program here.

MATCHPremier is similar to MATCHPlus, except it is a more involved process for those who need more support than MATCHPlus can provide. MATCHPremier provides embedded support by pairing one or more MATCHPremier Consultants with a research team for a period of engagement typically ranging from 12–18 months.

MATCHPremier is looking for volunteer consultants who will work with top institutional partners and in the process, benefit from the ACCESS MATCH support system. You can read more about the MATCHPremier program here.

Join the ACCESS team today! We look forward to working with you.

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