IPAM Research in Industrial Projects for Students (RIPS)-2003

A Program for Undergraduates

June 22 - August 22, 2003

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Program Poster PDF

Participants and Mentors


RIPS2003 Opening Day Schedule - June 23, 2003

RIPS2003 Projects Day Schedule - August 15, 2003

IPAM gratefully acknowledges additional grant support from the
National Security Agency for this program.


This was the most rewarding summer I remember. Of course, there were some hard times, but now looking back, I wish it was longer. The program was very close to perfect in all aspects: people, place, work, leisure.  It showed me that opportunities that I only dreamed of before are in fact very real! A very encouraging feeling.
PS: this may sound like a commercial ad, but the thing is that I really feel this way :-)
Thank You for everything.

Lucas Kroc, RIPS 2002

Summer RIPS was great! It was an excellent opportunity to apply the math learned in the classes to the real industrial projects. Another great aspect of the program was working at IPAM with friendly IPAM staff. They made everything for us to have an enjoyable experience, and I really enjoyed it. If anyone is in doubt about summer plans, I would say that RIPS is definitely the way to go.

Georgiy Elfond, RIPS 2002

Visit the RIPS2002 web page to see more information about last year's program and comments from the core participants.


What is IPAM-RIPS? The Institute for Pure and Applied Mathematics is sponsoring the 3rd year of a new program, Research in Industrial Projects for Students (RIPS), based on the successful Math Clinic concept that originated at Harvey Mudd College in 1973 as well as the well established  Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program sponsored by the National Science Foundation. In the RIPS program, teams of students, directed by faculty advisors, work to solve industry-related problems. RIPS brings together highly qualified undergraduates in mathematics or related majors with sponsoring industry, government, and nonprofit organizations to collaborate on projects. Each team of three to four advanced students spends two summer months working on a problem posed by the sponsoring organization under the leadership of a faculty advisor. At regular intervals during the two-month period, oral and written presentations reporting on the progress of the team are made. Company liaisons provide regular contact between the team and the sponsor, monitoring and helping to guide the work effort. Projects focus on problems of serious interest to the sponsor and stimulating challenges to the students. Participation in RIPS provides valuable real-world technical and managerial experience for students and valuable R&D for the sponsor.

Project Information:

What kind of projects will be available?  A selected project must have a major component in mathematics or have direct interactions with mathematical concepts. If you, as a potential industrial sponsor, have a challenging problem, chances are high that it could form the basis of a summer project.

Click here to review RIPS 2002 projects

For Students:

IPAMís first objective is to recruit from the top tier of undergraduate students at the national level and international level. So for students, RIPS is a unique research and learning experience. It provides an opportunity to work on real-world industrial problems and contribute to their solution. In addition, important contacts are made in academia and industry. The program adds an important element to the studentís curriculum vitae, enhancing future marketability upon graduation. The educational, environmental, and social aspects at UCLA also contribute to the appeal of this program. UCLA is located in Westwood Village, a scenic location approximately 4 miles from the ocean and within driving distance to a multitude of attractions. Students are housed in UCLA's residential housing and are provided board and lodging facilities plus a weekly stipend. A faculty advisor oversees the project with additional guidance from the sponsor's liaison. The one-on-one interactions present a golden opportunity to learn mathematical and problem solving skills in a practical environment. Students have offices in the IPAM building and daily opportunity to meet with fellow team members and other students. 

For Sponsors:

What are the benefits to the sponsor?  The sponsor acquires a skilled labor resources dedicated to solving a problem.  The sponsor receives the final work products, which might take the form of a research summary, design proposal, a prototype of a piece of hardware or software or even an actual device or program to be put into production.   The sponsor gains valuable visibility and exposure to a national talent pool of mathematicians and other scientists, which help enhance recruiting efforts and broaden public recognition of the sponsor's interest in education.

What role does the sponsor take in the project?  A project liaison, appointed from the sponsoring organization serves as the primary source of project-related, industry-specific expert information. In addition, the sponsor helps to provide mentoring, and career related information to the students. The amount of time that the liaison devotes to the project is variable, but the success of the project depends, in part, on the good working relationship between participants and the liaison.  In some cases the company may appoint a liaison 'team' to work on the project with the students.

 For Faculty Advisors:

Each project team consists of three to four students, one faculty advisor (mentor) and liaisons from the sponsoring company. The role of the faculty advisor is to oversee the progress of the project and to foster a unique learning opportunity for the students.  Advisors teach and guide the students to achieve results and develop their individual and teamwork skills throughout the duration of the project. A faculty advisor devotes up to 50% of their time to the project, allowing abundant time for personal research or other academic activities. A stipend commensurate with the percentage effort is provided.

Comments from RIPS 2001 Graduates

Comments from RIPS 2002 Graduates

Company Sponsors and Faculty Advisors:
The four companies that sponsored projects for RIPS 2001 were Arete, Digital Domain, HRL and Protein Pathways. The company sponsors for RIPS 2002 were Arete, HRL, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Protein Pathways and Synopsys. 
The company sponsors for RIPS 2003 are Arete, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Pixar and  Protein Pathways.


2003 Projects:

Five companies sponsor the 2003 projects.  They are:

Click on each company name for details of the company operations and the project that is being sponsored.


Los Alamos National Laboratory

Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory


Protein Pathways

Teams:  These are the team members for each project

Chad Johnson (Illinois Institute of Technology)
Yongjoon Lee (University of Pennsylvania)
Oliver Loxley (University of British Columbia)
Lucie Nguyen (University California,San Diego)
Faculty Advisors:
Selim Esedoglu (UCLA)
Company Liaisons:
David Campion (Arete)
Egbert Tse (Arete)
Dave Wasson (Arete)

Los Alamos National Laboratory:

Hayward Chan (University of Michigan)
Balint Felszeghy (Budapest University of Technology and Economics)
Mariana Raykova (Bard College)
Jiashen You (University of Hawaii at Manoa)
Faculty Advisors:
Martin Burger (UC
Company Liaisons:
Andrew M. Fraser (LANL)
Nicolas Hengartner (LANL)
Allon Percus (LANL)
Kevin Vixie (LANL)
Brendt E. Wohlberg (LANL)

Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory:
Sandra Daoust (University of Southern California)
John Holloway (University of Kentucky)
Linda Hung (University of California, Berkeley)
Alan Schiemenz (Baylor University)
Faculty Advisors:
Wai Sun Don (Brown University)
Jianliang Quin (UC
Company Liaisons:
Barna Bihari (LLNL)

Quang-Thu Huynh (University
of Houston)
Kang-Yu Ni (UCS
Nemanja Spasojevic (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)
Jan Sżkora (Charles University in Prague)
Faculty Advisors:
Douglas Enright (UCLA)
Company Liaisons:
John R. Anderson

Protein Pathways:
Mohamed Hegazy (American University in Cairo)
Neil Kumar (University of Souther California)
Jakob Macke (University of Oxford)
Kathy Valentino (Zhejiang University)
Faculty Advisors:
Bruce Rothschild (UCLA)
Shawn Cokus (P
rotein Pathways)
Company Liaisons:
Matteo Pellegrini (Protein Pathways)

Program Director: Michael Raugh (Harvey Mudd College)
Auxillary Mentor: Luminita Vese (UCLA)

Contact Us:

Institute for Pure and Applied Mathematics (IPAM)
RIPS2003 Program
460 Portola Plaza
Los Angeles, CA 90095-7121
Email: (310)825-4755
Phone:  310 825-4755
Fax: 310 825-4756
Web: http://www.ipam.ucla.edu

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