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Thursday, November 9, 2017

Sandia recruitment

ALBUQUERQUE (AP) — The head of Sandia National Laboratories says the research facility has recently made changes aimed at bolstering recruitment and diversifying the workforce. Just great, great lower the standards. Lab director Stephen Younger told members of a state legislative committee on Wednesday that Sandia has dropped its grade point average requirement for non-intern positions. Younger says the change adopted in August is part of an effort to look at the whole person, rather than just transcripts or what kind of degree a person might have. He says the change opens up the field to prospective workers who might have struggled early in college but went on to earn degrees. He says the lab is looking for people with grit and determination and it plans to work more closely with New Mexico's colleges and universities.

28 comments:

Anonymous said...

Grit and Determination = Low IQ
People wishing to apply there should be careful, unless they have no choice because of their NM state university degrees.


Anonymous said...

Perfectly reasonable, since as everyone knows grades aren't everything, at least not for people with a demonstrated history of accomplishments after graduation. Fresh out of college, yes, low grades will make the person a bigger risk. Which is important since once you get hired you're nearly impossible to fire, unless Sandia plans to change that too. Doesn't matter that you're at-will, the lawyers get involved and make it impossible to fire anyone who does not want to get fired, or doesn't do something ridiculous like distribute child porn from their work computer.

Anonymous said...

Original article

http://krqe.com/2017/11/08/sandia-labs-looks-to-boost-recruitment-of-employees/

Sandia really wants to occupy the lowest rung of the labs. Good for them.

Anonymous said...

"Perfectly reasonable, since as everyone knows grades aren't everything, at least not for people with a demonstrated history of accomplishments after graduation. Fresh out of college, yes, low grades will make the person a bigger risk. "

Agreed, if you have a proven track record of accomplishments than that is what counts, however this is not what this is about.
It is about hiring more unqualifed people from the state. NM is one of the worse states for eduction. It is not Sandia serves the nation not just NM. If you look at the number of issues that the NM labs have faced in the last 20 years about 50-60% are from hiring unqualified employees. Now the labs have other issues to but the quality of the workforce has been a major problem. Don't get on my case for being a jerk these are just the facts. I am open to another point of view that my estimate of 50% is wrong.

Anonymous said...

This is Younger finally acknowledging that he set the bar low on the selection of his Senior Leaders, so he may as well set the bar low across the Lab. Unfortunately, someone forgot to tell Younger that Sandia's hiring philosophy since the Lab was founded was to "hire only the best at Sandia, only the best"! Disappointing downward trend with the new contractor. This is Younger's first poor decision.

Anonymous said...

Parts R' Us (Sandia) doesn't need geniuses to stock the shelves.

Anonymous said...

In my experience hiring really good people is hard, and you can't always predict who they might be. At least half the ones you think are going to be stars, turn out to be cold lumps of rock. A really good decision would be to streamline the process for laying off the lumps of rock, rather than keeping them forever because you're afraid they might sue you if you lay them off. That's what the big tech companies do, and that's why they have excellent work forces on average - they have turnover, but the labs including Sandia do not.

Anonymous said...

"This is Younger finally acknowledging that he set the bar low on the selection of his Senior Leaders"

Perhaps, I am also hearing that he and his team never thought they really had a chance and the Lockheed was sure to win. They just through together a bid with rather random leadership since they figured it would not matter anyway but they won in the end since it would just look a bit too "criminal" if Lockheed won if you know what I mean. From what I am hearing things are not going very well at Sandia. In any case Younger may be retiring soon as he seems rather tried and he only wants a year or two as head of lab for prides sake. This team seems like a very odd pick but they could not pick Lockheed for political reasons and NNSA seems to have some agenda against Texas.

In the end what is done at Sandia that actually matters? If something major ever happened at Sandia I just don't see it getting into the news. Heck even when something has gone wrong at Sandia such as the Shawn Carpenter case Congress kept referring to this as a Los Alamos issue. During during a hearing a panel member even tried to correct a congressman that it Carpenter worked at Sandia not Los Alamos, and you see that the congressman was very confused and had no idea what Sandia was and kept going on about problems at Los Alamos. My main point that if they hire poor quality people who cannot get the job done or create screwups than so what, it simply does not matter. In many ways Lockheed was to big a player and just brought attention to NNSA since people have heard of Lockheed however no one has ever heard of Honywell. At best they may think it is some kind company that makes baked hams and nothing more. Maybe that was the real motive for the new team. No one knows them, no one cares, and none of it matters. Sandia is a house of cards and Lockheed was Kevin Spacey. The less anyone knows the better.

How did we get to the state that all the NNSA labs are sooo broken?

Anonymous said...

Younger's first poor decision was Girrens.

This will rot the core of Sandia. It becomes difficult to remove the disease of poorly prepared second rate technical staff.

Anonymous said...

How did we get to the state that all the NNSA labs are sooo broken?

November 10, 2017 at 11:16 PM

That's easy; we stopped testing our nuclear weapons.

Anonymous said...

Younger's first poor decision was Girrens.

This will rot the core of Sandia. It becomes difficult to remove the disease of poorly prepared second rate technical staff.

November 11, 2017 at 6:59 AM

I stand corrected. The lowering of hiring standards was Youngers' 2nd poor decision, many more on the way. I'm hearing that the staff are recognizing Girrens incompetence in the nuclear weapon program as the Chief Engineer. Girrens is merely a "bling leader", gold (microns) exterior coating with a dark cloud inside.

Anonymous said...

That's easy; we stopped testing our nuclear weapons.
November 11, 2017 at 8:11 AM

Yes but more generally, there is no clear mission. Has not been for 25 years now, despite many attempts to create new missions. Remember industrial CRADAs? Epic fail, the labs are too expensive, too slow, too inflexible, and as it turns out not nearly bright enough to overcome all those disadvantages, especially when the companies can just hire the best people outright without having to deal with the weird lab culture. "Global Security" was viewed as a big new trough, but that really hasn't ever panned out, for some of the exact same reasons. Fusion energy from ICF was a big mission for years at LLNL, but look where that went. The only enduring mission has been "stockpile stewardship", but since we can't even agree among ourselves what those words mean, never mind what we should be doing long-term, we can't expect to convince Congress to make it a top priority and stop viewing it as welfare for weapons scientists.

Anonymous said...

November 11, 2017 at 1:31 PM

Everything you say is true, but none of it mattered when we were testing. Doing something that requires approval from the White House before pushing the button carries with it a certain gravitas, regardless of the outcome.

Anonymous said...

"especially when the companies can just hire the best people outright "

I find this to be very offensive who are you and who are these "companies" to decide who are the best people. What one often sees is that the so called "best" are the people that uphold the current structures of privilege and power. We need to dismantle the concepts of best or brightest people as these are loaded and problematic terms. Grades and educational qualifications do not measure ability or potential they only measure class, and dominate power structures in a society in which these structures are trying to maintain themselves or even expand. When you start off with a premise that there are "best people" it automatically implies that are other people who are "not the best" thus you create the "other". One does not feel guilty about unearned jobs, titles, and earnings as some of us are "better" than "others".

The labs can have a mission, the mission to serve the communities and give back to communities in which they coexist. Right now the labs are just a way to take value or money from the communities and concentrate to give more power to the already powerful who can justify this theft by saying they are "best people". Never mind how the labs have also aided in Americas world hegemony as that is a topic for a different post. It is time to give back and that is a mission we can all agree to.

Also can you please apologise to me and others who may been "triggered" by you offensive use of the term "best people" which we all know is a "dog whistle" in your attempt to "normalize" the continued existence of dominate power structures of which you benefit.

Anonymous said...

7:14, I am triggered by your lack of coherent thoughts and misuse of quotation marks.

Anonymous said...

7:14 PM, you should run for chair of the Democratic National Committee!

Anonymous said...

7:14 seems to be espousing the central tenants of Marxism. Why is it necessary to point out that Marxism has failed everywhere it has been tried?

Anonymous said...

Uh, 7:14, there ARE people who are not the best. We see them everywhere, even here on the blog. By the way, the term is dominant power structures, not "dominate".

Do you get what I'm alluding to?

Anonymous said...

Man, some folks here are either really dense or have no sense of humor. Or both.

Anonymous said...

Is Sandia going to establish a group of 2.0 grade point average engineers and physicists to run that place?
And from garbage dump schools like NMSU and UNM?
Their fusion project, which is a joke and failure, wouldn’t fare any worse.

Anonymous said...

PLease try to exercise some appreciation for irony and sarcasm. 7:14 doesn't have much, but he apparently has more of that then some commenters here.

Anonymous said...


Uh, 7:14, there ARE people who are not the best. We see them everywhere, even here on the blog. By the way, the term is dominant power structures, not "dominate".

Do you get what I'm alluding to?


Grammer is a class weapon always has been. You go to your privileged schools learn grammar and than declare that as a tool
of superiority, no do YOU get what I'm alluding to.

6:52 AM like it or not the Marxism or Socialism is the way of the future. The revolution is actually coming from technology which is breaking down the walls of class structure, the need to work, and the means of production. Your privacy is going away, your male privilege of abuse is falling before your eyes, there will be no place for people who live outside of the internet. It is just a matter of time before we start Brain chipping and this will change humanity forever. The nation state will melt away and be replaced by a global community. Trump is the last gasp of a dying systems and nothing more. Your cis/white/male/upper class world that benefits only the few has been slipping. These system need people to believe in them and the people are rising, think about just how close we came to having Bernie Sanders as our president, we already have Jerry Brown, it is clear that it is only a matte of time before the socialism does come into power.

You correct that communism has failed but that was because it was too soon. The nation must go through a period of capitalism and/or fascism to build up enough wealth before the revolution can truly happen in a natural way that most people watch. Our comrades from the past simply wanted changes to quickly but thanks to Facebook and twitter we are now in the middle of the revolution.

Anonymous said...

Marxists have been saying a revolution is just about to come together for a hundred years now. It wasn't true then and it isn't true now.

Why? Marxism takes the incentive to create wealth away from the only people capable of creating wealth. That's a flaw so obviously fatal it's stunning that anyone can be so brainwashed as to believe that Marxism can work.

Dream on. Marxism will soon be relegated to the trash heap of history.

Anonymous said...

I have experience with Sandia management trying to pass off one of their employees, a BS degree engineer from UNM, as a Ph.D.
They basically gave him a position at the Ph.D. level and kept his lack of education hush-hush. Do others on this blog have similar experience? Maybe this is where younger is going with this.

Also, it’s a GTFO for employees with degrees from top universities.

Anonymous said...

I have experience with Sandia management trying to pass off one of their employees, a BS degree engineer from UNM, as a Ph.D.
They basically gave him a position at the Ph.D. level and kept his lack of education hush-hush. Do others on this blog have similar experience? Maybe this is where younger is going with this.

Also, it’s a GTFO for employees with degrees from top universities.

November 14, 2017 at 5:17 PM

To be fair did the person do a good job? To do high level technical or scientific work one does not need PhD, in fact if you look at the Noble prize recipients from say the last 20 years there are several examples of people without a PhD who have won.

Now, there are still general requirements for many jobs and a PhD can be good filter but should not be strict requirement. Now with that out of the I can say from experience that many of high level mangers who did not have a Phd have been very poor compared to those that have and many of the management picks and people that have been promoted have been rather low quality in their jobs and you can often (but not always) correlate that with either lack of educational credentials, not very impressive education or lack of any kind of record from their education. Of course what the outside world views as successful is often very different than what the closed world of the NNSA labs often look like.

Look a lot of this is just statistics, if you have a PhD in physics with good grades, and a good publication record from Harvard on average you are going to better at more things than say someone with poor grades, a weak publication record with a PhD in chemistry from NMSU. Again let me emphases this is on average, however if you have worked at labs long enough than you will see that the results and averages are very consistent.

As for Younger I think he is getting a lot or pressure from the state of New Mexico. I am all for getting the best local talent that the labs can but we cannot compromise the quality and like it or not quality is often judged by statistical methods.

Another possibility is to hire like they do at Google, Microsoft or Goldman Sachs which is to give applicants a test, which is essentially just an IQ test, it seems to work pretty well and on average it correlates with grades, eduction and quality of the schools, but not always. An interesting question to aks is if the NNSA labs hired by using a similar set of tests how many people at the labs would still be hired? Of course we do a different kind of job than these places and in principle should be thinking more long which would require different skills but does one ever see long term thinking at an NNSA lab?



Anonymous said...

"...like it or not the Marxism or Socialism is the way of the future."
November 13, 2017 at 5:41 PM

Clearly a race between Marxism and inertially confined fusion power for the masses.

Anonymous said...

To 5:17's point, yes, such mismanagement is common. I saw two Group Leaders with high school educations and presently have an acting AD with a bachelor's degree. The simple fact is that Cal Poly B-students like Knapp hired a lot of C-students to make their empire both secure and stupid.

Anonymous said...

Well, I guess, in the same way that LANS became a welfare program for the northern Rio Grande Valley, Sandia can now do its part to be a welfare program for the central Rio Grande Valley.

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