IPAM Research in Industrial Projects for Students (RIPS)-2003
A Program for Undergraduates
June 22 - August 22, 2003
IPAM gratefully acknowledges additional grant support from the
National Security Agency for this program.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Company Sponsors and Faculty
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.
Teams: These are the team members for each project
Los Alamos National Laboratory:
Lawrence Livermore National
Neil Kumar (University of Souther California)
Jakob Macke (University of Oxford)
Kathy Valentino (Zhejiang University)
Bruce Rothschild (UCLA)
Shawn Cokus (Protein Pathways)
Matteo Pellegrini (Protein Pathways)
Program Director: Michael
Raugh (Harvey Mudd College)
Institute for Pure and
Applied Mathematics (IPAM)