The Unidata Program Center's three summer student interns — Lydia Bunting from Texas Tech University, Connor Cozad from the College of Charleston in South Carolina, and Isabelle Pfander from Willamette University in Oregon — have come to the end of their summer appointments. After a summer of dedicated work they presented the results of their projects to the UPC staff on July 28, 2021. You can find videos of their presentations to the UPC staff on the Unidata Seminar Series page.
This was another an odd year for the Unidata Summer Internship program. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, for the second year in a row our interns did not travel to Boulder to work on their projects in person. Instead, they interacted with Unidata developers through e-mail, online chat, and video conferencing. While the remote setup was less than ideal, Lydia, Connor, and Izzy all made excellent progress on their summer goals.
Lydia Bunting came to Unidata this summer with the goals of helping with the development of new MetPy features, working on fixing existing problems, and gaining a better understanding of the software development process. She tackled an issue dealing with projection attributes of a specific set of netCDF archive files when used with the pyproj interface for cartographic projections and coordinate transformations.
You can read Lydia's take on her summer's work in MetPy 1.1.0 Milestones: Code Fixes and Verification over on the Unidata Developers' blog. You can also watch the video recording of her presentation to Unidata staff over on the Seminar Series page.
Connor Cozad spent his summer with Unidata building MetPy features. He was able to add GEMPAK-style "region modifiers" for regional plots, making it easier to zoom in and out of maps. He also spearheaded the development of MetPy’s new PlotGeometry class, making it easy to plot data from geoJSON files and shapefiles. Both of these features will appear in the MetPy 1.1.0 release.
You can read about Connor's summer's work in Enhancements to Plotting Capabilities in MetPy over on the Unidata Developers' blog. The video recording of his presentation to Unidata staff is available on the Seminar Series page.
Izzy (Isabelle) Pfander
Izzy (Isabelle) Pfander came to her internship hoping to work on the Network Common Data Form (netCDF) libraries. She contributed to the netCDF-Java documentation by updating tutorial code, testing code snippets, and modernizing tutorial text to improve user understanding. Izzy also had time to focus on performance testing in Python. She compared file read performance with several data formats, including netCDF-3, netCDF-4, HDF5, and Zarr.
You can read Izzy's description of her summer's work in Maintaining netCDF: Updating Java Tutorial Code and Performance Testing in Python over on the Unidata Developers' blog. You can see the video recording of her presentation to Unidata staff on the Seminar Series page.
The Unidata Summer Internships offer undergraduate and graduate students an opportunity to work with Unidata software engineers and scientists on projects drawn from a wide variety of areas in the atmospheric and computational sciences. If you're a student thinking about internships for the summer of 2022, keep Unidata in mind. Unidata's summer internships are generally advertised in late December to early January, so be sure to check back at the end of the year. For reference, you can take a look at the Internship page.
We at the Program Center certainly enjoyed having Izzy, Connor, and Lydia working beside us this summer, and we wish them the best of luck in their future endeavors.