News and Events

ICS Events

ICS hosts a wide range of events, from training sessions on using our high-performance computing system to seminars about the latest topics in computational research. Here, you will find a list of upcoming ICS events, as well as other events that may be of interest to the cyberscience community. Sign up for our Events Digest to receive weekly alerts about our events.

Want to learn what ICS researchers are working on? Check out our CyberScience Seminar series.

Intro to Python and Jupyter

Date: Tuesday, January 15–Tuesday, January 29

ICS-led workshops will cover several beginner level topics with using the Jupyter platform and Python. This is geared toward any faculty member, staff member, or student interested in learning programming. Registration is required for the in-person and online workshops. Sessions will be offered:

  • Tuesday, January 15, 1:00–2:30 p.m., W203 Millennium Science Complex
  • Wednesday, January 23, 2:00–3:30 p.m., Online
  • Thursday, January 24, 1:00–2:30 p.m., Foster Auditorium
  • Tuesday, January 29, 3:00–4:30 p.m., 252 Erickson Food Science Building

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“Statistical Inference for Cataloging the Visible Universe”

Date: Tuesday, January 15

Time: 3:30 p.m.–4:30 p.m.

Location: 201 Thomas Building

Jeffrey Regier, postdoctoral researcher at UC Berkeley, will present a new approach to cataloging astronomical objects based on inference in a fully specified probabilistic model.

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ACI Training Series Logo

ICS-ACI Training Series

Date: Wednesday, January 16–Monday, April 22

The ICS-ACI Training Series is designed to help users become acclimated to ICS-ACI while also teaching a few fundamental HPC skills. Registration is required. Sessions will be offered:   Seminar 1 – ICS-ACI System Basics

  • Wednesday, January 16, 2019, 1 p.m. – 2:30 p.m., 252 Erickson Food Science Building
  • Wednesday, February 6, 2019, 10 a.m. – 11:30 a.m., Foster Auditorium
  • Tuesday, March 19, 2019, 10 a.m. – 11:30 a.m., Foster Auditorium
Seminar 2 – Submitting your First Job
  • Wednesday, January 23, 2019, 1 p.m. – 2:30 p.m., Foster Auditorium
  • Monday, February 18, 2019, 1 p.m. – 2:30 p.m., 252 Erickson Food Science Building
  • Thursday, March 21, 2019, 3 p.m. – 4:30 p.m., 116 Steidle Building
Seminar 3 – Intro to HPC Programming
  • Monday, March 11, 2019, 1 p.m. – 2:30 p.m., 252 Erickson Food Science Building
  • Wednesday, March 27, 2019, 10 a.m. – 11:30 a.m., W203 Millenium Science Complex
Seminar 4 – Intermediate HPC
  • Thursday, March 14, 2019, 1 p.m. – 2:30 p.m., Foster Auditorium
  • Tuesday, April 2, 2019, 3 p.m. – 4:30 p.m., 252 Erickson Food Science Building

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extreme science and engineering discovery workshop series at psu ics

XSEDE HPC Workshop: OpenMP

Date: Wednesday, January 16

Time: 11:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

Location: 424 Ag Administration Bldg

The workshop is intended to give C and Fortran programmers a hands-on introduction to OpenMP programming. Register by January 14.

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“Machine Learning Techniques for Renewable Energy and Wildfire Prediction”

Date: Wednesday, January 16

Time: 3:30 p.m.–4:30 p.m.

Location: 112 Walker Building

Tyler McCandless, machine learning scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research and Penn State alumnus, will outline three projects at NCAR’s Research Applications Laboratory utilizing machine learning for improved short-range solar power prediction, wind power conversion and wildland fire decision support systems.

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“On the Importance of Computational and Data Science”

Date: Wednesday, January 16

Time: 4:00 p.m.–5:00 p.m.

Location: 501 Wartik Lab

Lyle Long, professor of aerospace engineering, computational science, and mathematics, and ICS associate, will present as part of the Weekly Wednesday Genomics Seminar Series.

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CyberScience Seminar: Decision-Making in the Business World

Date: Tuesday, January 22

Time: 1:30 p.m.–3:00 p.m.

Location: 233B HUB-Robeson Center

Chris Parker, assistant professor of supply chain management and Institute for CyberScience associate, will discuss his research on the use of high-performance computing for business. This event is part of ICS's CyberScience Seminar series. A live stream of the event will be available via Zoom. Registration is required by Monday, January 21.

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“What Needs to Be Added to Machine Learning?”

Date: Friday, January 25

Time: 2:00 p.m.–3:00 p.m.

Location: W201 Westgate Building

Leslie Valiant, the T. Jefferson Coolidge Professor of Computer Science and Applied Mathematics at Harvard University, will discuss supervised learning and whether one can build on the success of machine learning to address the broader goals of artificial intelligence.

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Center for Social Data Analytics Open House

Date: Monday, January 28

Time: 12:00 p.m.–2:30 p.m.

Location: B001 Sparks Databasement

The Center for Social Data Analytics will kick off 2019 with networking, lightning talks, and posters from the C-SoDA members. The event is open to all interested members of the Penn State community.

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Hack Response Simulation 2019

Date: Wednesday, March 13

Time: 8:30 a.m.–3:30 p.m.

Location: Technology Support Building

Data breaches and cyber hacks are a major concern for businesses, organizations, and governments. Hacks disrupt operations, put sensitive information at risk, harm an organization's reputation, jeopardize national security, and cost the economy billions of dollars each year. The Penn State Hack Response Simulation 2019 competition, designed by Penn State faculty, was put together to help faculty develop interdisciplinary educational approaches to hacks and to help students know how to understand the full range of necessary steps to address and minimize harm from security breaches.

How is the competition structured?

Interdisciplinary teams of faculty and students (randomly assigned by the simulation planners) will learn how easily systems are breached through witnessing in real-time a simulated cyber hack. Participants will see and learn how easily and quickly a hacker, using openly available software, breaches a system. Faculty and students then collaborate on teams to formulate the best course of action, including defensive and offensive measures, preservation of evidence requirements, legal notice requirements, and the reputation and public relations side of handling a hack. Teams will present their team’s response to an executive board of Penn State faculty, alum, and legal and technical scholars. A winning team will be selected and each individual team member on the team will receive a prize. Teams will be charged with answering questions related to the following:
  • How is the hack detected and how was the system breached?
  • How should the system be secured?
  • What data was accessed and what data was taken?
  • Can the nature of and intent behind the hack be determined? Malicious or white hat hacker?
  • Can the identity of the hacker be determined?
  • What defensive measures can be used?
  • Can the hacked entity’s IT professionals hack back?
  • Should/must law enforcement be involved?
  • Is the hack, as well as any associated damages, covered by the business’s insurance policies?
  • Other legal compliance requirements and risk management topics must be addressed, including: electronic evidence preservation, notice to affected individuals, information sharing with law enforcement, national security, applicable non-disclosure agreement contractual requirements
  • Public relations/communication response
The closed cyber hack simulation will involve a hack and system breach and theft of data that potentially consists of some or all of the following data: PII, biometric data, medical data, and national security information. The project was designed by Anne Toomey McKenna, distinguished scholar of cyber law and policy and professor in practice, and Russell Houseknecht, lecturer in information sciences and technology.


8:30–9:00 a.m. — Meet and greet, with coffee and bagels 9:00–9:15 a.m. — Welcome remarks, introduction of speakers and hack executive board, overview of cyber hack simulation 9:15–10:15 a.m. — Cyber hack simulation 10:15–11:45 a.m. — Breakout for response development Noon — Team responses submitted to executive board Noon–1:00 p.m. — Catered lunch 1:00–2:30 p.m. — Teams present responses to executive board 3:00–3:30 p.m. — Executive board overview of hack and basis for board’s evaluations. Announcement of first place team and presentation of awards.

Executive Board

  • Jenni Evans, director of the Institute for CyberScience and professor of meteorology and atmospheric science
  • Pete Forster, associate teaching professor of information sciences and technology
  • Amy Gaudion, associate dean for academic affairs and assistant professor of law, Dickinson Law
  • Mike Hohnka, research and development engineer, Applied Research Laboratory
  • Jim Houck, director, Center for Security Research and Education
  • Russ Houseknecht, lecturer in information sciences and technology
  • Anne McKenna, distinguished scholar of cyber law and policy and professor in practice, Institute for CyberScience and Dickinson Law
  • The Honorable Thomas Vanaskie, judge, United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit

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ICS Symposium 2019

Date: Monday, April 1

Time: 8:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m.

Location: Nittany Lion Inn

Register for 2019 ICS Symposium With advances in computational science, researchers are finding new solutions to major societal problems. This one-day conference, hosted by the Institute for CyberScience at Penn State, will focus on innovative computational research across a diverse set of disciplines. Come hear nationally renowned speakers and be part of the discussion. Faculty, graduate students, industry, and representatives of funding agencies are welcome to attend. The symposium aims to connect researchers to potential industry partners, funding agencies, and collaborators. Please contact Suzy Unger at if you have any questions about the ICS Symposium.


The event will feature:
  • One keynote speaker
  • Six moderated discussion panels
  • A moderated poster session showcasing computational and data-enabled research

Keynote Speaker

We are excited to announce that Dr. Michael Franklin from the University of Chicago will be speaking at the Symposium. Dr. Michael J. Franklin Liew Family Chair of Computer Science Sr. Advisor to the Provost for Computation and Data Science University of Chicago

Panel Sessions

Security, Fairness, and Privacy of Machine Learning, coordinated by Patrick McDaniel Panel Chair: Patrick McDaniel, Penn State Panel Members: David Evans, University of Virginia Alina Oprea, Northeastern University Srikanth Krishnamurthy, University of California, Riverside Science Applications of Big Data & Machine Learning, coordinated by Eric Ford Panel Chair: TBD Panel Members: Mario Juic, University of Washington Derek Fox, Penn State Chaopeng Shen, Penn State Christelle Wauthier, Penn State Social Good, coordinated by Vasant Honavar Panel Chair: TBD Panel Members: TBD Law, coordinated by Anne Toomey McKenna Panel Chair: TBD Panel Members: TBD Immersive Technology, coordinated by Ping Li Panel Chair: Ping Li, Penn State University Panel Members: Alex Klippel, Penn State Conrad Tucker, Penn State Brad Wyble, Penn State Timothy Brick, Penn State Computational Materials Design & Machine Learning, coordinated by Susan Sinnott Panel Chair: John Mauro, Penn State Panel Members: Ismaila Dabo, Penn State Elizabeth Holm, Carnegie Mellon Adama Tandia, Corning Krishna Rajan, University of Buffalo

Poster Session

ICS is excited to help showcase posters that focus on different aspects of data- or simulation-enabled research. All accepted posters received prior to March 11 will be printed free of charge on fabric, and students can keep their poster at the end of the event. Awards Two students will receive prizes of $750 in travel funds to a top-tier conference of choice where the students will present their work. Eligibility The poster session is open to students or faculty. If a faculty member wins, he or she can elect a student to receive the award. Format
  • Posters: must be 48" x 36" (either orientation) and be uploaded as a PDF file.
  • Abstracts: must use this format and be uploaded as a PDF file.
Please name your files according to this convention: Last name-Poster Title-[Abstract or Poster], e.g., Wang-Using Machine Learning to Identify Software Vulnerabilities-Abstract.pdf Deadline Monday, March 11 If you have any questions, please contact Suzy Unger at


  • Free for Penn State faculty, staff, and students who register and attend
    • Budget information will be collected for Faculty and Staff. Charges will only occur if the registrant does not show up or cancel their registration.
  • $75 for all other attendees

Location and Lodging

The Nittany Lion Inn 200 W Park Ave State College, PA 16803 The State College/University Park Airport (SCE) is located less than 15 minutes from the hotel, and a free shuttle is available to be scheduled for hotel guests.


Google Maps Directions to the Nittany Lion Inn Map of the Penn State Campus


Parking is available in the Nittany Parking Deck for non-overnight guests. See the front desk to have your parking validated on your way out. Register for 2019 ICS Symposium

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