Staff Spotlight:
Jaime combariza

Meet Jaime Combariza

Jaime Combariza is an an associate research professor in the Department of Chemistry. He became the director of the Advanced Research Computing at Hopkins back when it was first established in 2015. 

1. What is your role at ARCH?

JC: “I am the Director of ARCH, in charge of integrating High Performance, Data Intensive computing and Machine Learning resources to build a seamless Research Computing environment, in addition to providing exceptional computational scientific support to the Hopkins research community.”

2. How long have you been working for ARCH?

JC: “At Johns Hopkins, this is my 10th year.”

3. What inspired you to pursue the career you have today?

JC: “When I was a postdoc in computational Chemistry at the University of Arizona, I consulted with the research computing group while conducting my own research. Later, I was invited to join the group and discovered I enjoyed troubleshooting issues with scientific codes and providing the level of support I had received. After a few other post-doc positions, I was invited by this group to join them on a permanent basis and soon after I became the manager of the group. Growing into an administrative role happened organically and I still dedicate a portion of my day to fixing and optimizing code.”

4. What’s your favorite aspect of your job?

JC: “I take pride in knowing that I am providing resources that advance their research for all users of our core facility. My favorite aspect is the direct interaction with faculty and users to understand their compute needs and create sandboxes/pilots as new needs arise.”

5. What is the most interesting project you've worked on here?

JC: “Definitely, the last MRI proposal, where I played a key role. This is the base of the Rockfish cluster, a resource developed from faculty for faculty.”

6. What is a skill that’s important to have in your role?

JC: “Managing communications and expectations. It is important not only to deliver what is promised and create trust, individually and as a group, but also to ensure all stakeholders are engaged and aware of resources and limitations of the research computing environment.”

7. What are your goals for the next few months/years?

JC: “Continue providing cyberinfrastructure resources in the fast-growing area of Research Computing and Data (RCD) and executing the core-facility sustainability plan.”

8. What do you like to do outside of work?

JC: “I like gardening, taking care of the yard and working on becoming a better handy man.”