UTPB student makes trek from Nevada to bitcoin’s Verde Mining – Midland Reporter-Telegram


Daniel Fernandez came to the University of Texas Permian Basin from small town Nevada without confidently knowing what to study or pursue as a career.

Now as a current senior, Fernandez is a software engineer at Midland’s Verde Mining – a bitcoin mining company. Fernandez started with them last summer as an intern and has been offered the position after he graduates.

As Verde’s software engineer, Fernandez works with a senior software developer and helps Verde Mining’s back-end server function – the server that manages the performance and condition of bitcoin mining machines.

“The server we have runs locally with the miners and we’re able to communicate with it and manage the miners based on if they’re working or not, if they’re underperforming, stuff like that. We can reboot them remotely,” he said.

Fernandez found the internship the same way many college students do – from a flyer hung up on UTPB’s wall advertising internships opportunities within his major.

He said UTPB does well to communicate with students when it comes to internship opportunities, job fairs and visiting employers. He also claimed that the professors in his major have real-world experience and are willing to stay after class, give up their time to review concepts with students.

Fernandez graduated high school in Winnemucca, Nevada — a town in the north central region of the state with a population of about 8,000 — at 17 with his diploma and an Associates of Arts degree. He found UTPB during his college search.

“It seemed like a pretty affordable option,” Fernandez said. “I got the Presidential Scholarship (full scholarship), so I was like ‘Texas, I’ve never been there, why not?’”

Fernandez claimed he didn’t think about his field of study or career aspirations until his senior year of high school.

“I knew I was good at problem-solving, math was always a breeze for me,” he said.  He ended up deciding on computer science, given his natural skill and ability.

He brought attention to the staff at Verde Mining, which he called an understanding and helpful group that has been instrumental in his continued learning of the job and industry.

Regarding Paul Cockerham, Verde’s co-founder, Fernandez said, “He was really nice, really understanding throughout the whole process, he let me kind of make my own hours and go there whenever I need to. He taught me a lot.”

Fernandez said Nicholas Hopper, Verde’s senior software developer, and Cockerham are still sharing valuable lessons with him to this day.

Bitcoin mining in West Texas, according to Fernandez, is beneficial because of the access to energy used to power bitcoin mining machines.

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