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Pacific Northwest National Laboratory PhD Intern - HPC GNN Benchmarking in Helena, Montana


The High-Performance Computing (HPC) Group at PNNL seeks a Ph.D. level intern researcher with a background and expertise in Graph Neural Networks (GNNs) and their application and evaluation on HPC computing systems. Graph Neural Networks have tremendous potential in multiple machine learning domains. However, it is still challenging to scale to large graphs for complex classification and prediction problems. Distilling complex scientific applications into self-contained proxy applications allows domain experts, computer scientists, and system architects to effectively collaborate. This internship will entail developing efficient and scalable Graph Neural Network problems and proxy applications on distributed-memory accelerator-based systems. Basic concepts pertaining to computer organization, memory hierarchy, performance analysis, and HPC communication models are relevant skill sets.

Specific topics of interest include:

  • Machine learning models, with a focus on Graph Neural Networks

  • Computer architecture, including processing, memory, and interconnection networks

  • Performance modeling, prediction, and optimization of Graph Neural Network workloads

  • Computer system benchmarking and measurement

  • Distributed and parallel scientific computing


Responsibilities and Accountabilities include:

  • Working with researchers across disciplines to help shape future computing systems and workloads with mission impact

  • Participating in and potentially leading technical discussions with collaborators

  • Presentation of research results in peer-reviewed conferences and workshops

  • Contributing to and developing papers to be submitted to peer-reviewed venues


Minimum Qualifications:

  • Candidates must be currently enrolled/matriculated in a PhD program at an accredited college.

  • Minimum GPA of 3.0 is required.

Hazardous Working Conditions/Environment

Not applicable

Additional Information

Not applicable

Testing Designated Position

This is not a Testing Designated Position (TDP)

About PNNL

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) is a world-class research institution powered by a highly educated, diverse workforce committed to the values of Integrity, Creativity, Collaboration, Impact, and Courage. Every year, scores of dynamic, driven people come to PNNL to work with renowned researchers on meaningful science, innovations and outcomes for the U.S. Department of Energy and other sponsors; here is your chance to be one of them!

At PNNL, you will find an exciting research environment and excellent benefits including health insurance, flexible work schedules and telework options. PNNL is located in eastern Washington State—the dry side of Washington known for its stellar outdoor recreation and affordable cost of living. The Lab’s campus is only a 45-minute flight (or 3 hour drive) from Seattle or Portland, and is serviced by the convenient PSC airport, connected to 8 major hubs.

Commitment to Excellence, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Equal Employment Opportunity

Our laboratory is committed to a diverse and inclusive work environment dedicated to solving critical challenges in fundamental sciences, national security, and energy resiliency. We are proud to be an Equal Employment Opportunity and Affirmative Action employer. In support of this commitment, we encourage people of all racial/ethnic identities, women, veterans, and individuals with disabilities to apply for employment.

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory considers all applicants for employment without regard to race, religion, color, sex (including pregnancy, sexual orientation, and gender identity), national origin, age, disability, genetic information (including family medical history), protected veteran status, and any other status or characteristic protected by federal, state, and/or local laws.

We are committed to providing reasonable accommodations for individuals with disabilities and disabled veterans in our job application procedures and in employment. If you need assistance or an accommodation due to a disability, contact us at .

Drug Free Workplace

PNNL is committed to a drug-free workplace supported by Workplace Substance Abuse Program (WSAP) and complies with federal laws prohibiting the possession and use of illegal drugs.

Mandatory Requirements

Please be aware that the Department of Energy (DOE) prohibits DOE employees and contractors from having any affiliation with the foreign government of a country DOE has identified as a “country of risk” without explicit approval by DOE and Battelle. If you are offered a position at PNNL and currently have any affiliation with the government of one of these countries, you will be required to disclose this information and recuse yourself of that affiliation or receive approval from DOE and Battelle prior to your first day of employment.

Rockstar Rewards

Regular Hourly:

Employees are offered an employee assistance program and business travel insurance. Employees are eligible for the company funded pension plan and 401k savings plan, once eligibility requirements are met.

Temporary Hourly:

Employees are offered an employee assistance program and business travel insurance.

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