Workout for both mind and body

Workout for both mind and body

Pinja Ahola

Students came to Nuuksio to attend the Summer School in High-Performance Computing as well as enjoy nature, coding and leisure activities.

Nuuksio lake highlands, Solvalla Sports Institute. Glimmering Lake Pitkäjärvi is ringed by rocky cliffs. Inside the classroom glitter the bright screens of laptops and Sisunen, the mobile little brother of the Sisu supercomputer.

Nuuksio's majestic landscape is the perfect setting for learning about high-performance computing. This marked the eighth annual CSC summer school, with students from all over the world gathering to develop their high-performance computing skills and take a break from study with some sports and leisure activities.


"Nuuksio is an ideal place to have a summer school."


The nine day summer school is winding down, and on the second to last day, one can sense the slightest bit of competition fatigue. Even though the school days were filled with an intensive pace, challenging subject matter and strong desire to learn more, the students still seem happy.

The summer school was attended by students from a variety of disciplines, such as physicians, chemists, mathematicians, programmers and those studying data processing. When the summer school participants were asked what made them want to attend, "sauna", "activities" and (programming language) "Fortran" were some of the many responses called out by the class.

Dick Sjöström (on the left) and Eiaki Morooka (on the right) thought CSC summer school was a great experience.

Dick Sjöström from Linnaeus University in Sweden and Eiaki Morooka from Aalto University were satisfied with the studies offered by the summer school. Morooka says that he wanted to study programming, particularly the programming of software for future needs. Sjöström nods and explains that, even though he was already familiar with programming before coming to the summer school, he wanted to further expand his skills and expertise.

"A marvellous combination of sport, coding and a great atmosphere"

In addition to the rewarding studies, both Morooka and Sjöström praised the summer school's location.

– Nuuksio is such a lovely place to have a summer school, says Sjöström.

Morooka agrees, adding:

– It sure is, and the sports activities was a really good idea!

Joonas Nättilä from the University of Turku feels the same way. Nättilä participated in the course four years ago and was then asked to be a tutor for it. He has tutored summer school students for the past three summers and is always happy to come back.

– It's the people. There's always such a good vibe here. The summer school is a marvellous combination of sport, coding and a great atmosphere.

Training Manager Jussi Enkovaara also emphasises the balance of study and sport: coding all day long takes a toll, so the sports and leisure activities offer a nice counterpoint to it. Both mind and body get a proper workout at the summer school.

Joonas Nättilä is participating summer school for the fourth time now as a tutor.

Inspiration from the sense of community

Morooka and Sjöström felt that the sense of community they experienced at the summer school was a particularly nice aspect.

– If the school was held in the city, everyone would probably head home after the classes. Here, we can spend time together.

At the summer school, students can meet others with similar interests, seeing how they approach problems as well as the types of problems they are working with. This helps expand one's own perspective.

Both Sjöström and Morooka believe that the knowledge and skills they have gained will serve them well in the future. After a hearty lunch at the Solvalla Sports Institute, they continue on their way to the last work session before going for a paddle on Lake Pitkäjärvi.

Freshened after a brief rain shower, the air is easy to breathe, the sun is shining and the lake is simply too hard to resist. Students would definitely love to study here for longer than just nine days. Fortunately, another summer school is already in the works for next summer.



CSC Summer School in High-Performance Computing 2017

  • Held for the eighth time at the Nuuksio National Park in Nuuksio, Espoo
  • Course in programming and systems needed for high-performance computing as well as leisure activities, sports and the exchanging of ideas with other students interested in the same subjects
  • Accommodations in 1-2-person rooms
  • Ideal for students in a variety of fields of science, graduate students and post-docs, who use high-performance computing resources in their work
  • 24 students from ten different universities all over the world attended the 2017 summer school. There were approximately ten different nationalities represented in the school group
  • The instruction language was English


Photos: Tiia Pulli, Sami Iivonen, Maria Virkkula and Pinja Ahola.

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