The UCLA Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science offers first-in-class research opportunities that lead to undergraduates who are well-informed about engineering career opportunities in both academic and corporate settings.  UCLA Samueli offers elite undergraduate engineering students a valuable academic research experience.  Our program is designed for students who are interested in understanding the impact of engineering research and learning more about the graduate school experience.

The Summer Undergraduate Research Program (SURP) is an umbrella organization that administers and scaffolds summer undergraduate research opportunities within UCLA Engineering.  We currently coordinate several programs, including the Interactive Systems, Functional Nanomaterials, Engineering Faculty Lab REU Supplement, and the Electrical & Computer Engineering Fast Track to Success Summer Scholars Program. In the past two years, the program has been run virtually, but we hope to run in-person programs in the future.

Selected scholars will be paired with a UCLA Engineering faculty based on project needs, skills, and interest.  Interns will be invited to work on a project that contributes to the momentum of their assigned lab.

The application for SURP will be a common application for the REU site and the engineering faculty lab REU supplement. *For the students doing the engineering faculty lab REU supplement, the application will merely be a formality.

Benefits of Participating

  • Conduct research in a cutting-edge field at a world-renown research institution.
  • Mentoring from an UCLA Engineering faculty member and graduate student daily lab supervisor.
  • Learn how you can impact your community as an engineer.
  • Interact with a national community of peers.
  • Discover pathways to graduate school.
  • Acquire skills that can translate to industry.
  • Gain a competitive advantage on your peers.
  • Engage the ultimate academic challenge.
  • Have fun!


  • Must be a continuing student (Freshman, Sophomore, Junior, or Non-Graduating Senior)
  • U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident
  • Minimum 3.0 GPA

Our applications are currently closed–stay tuned for next summer!

Program Components

Industry Tech Talks

Scholars will have an opportunity to hear presentations from our industry partners.  Past Tech Talk series have included presentations from Disney’s Imagineering, Two Bit Circus, Broadcom, and Northrop Grumman.

Academic Research

Scholars can expect to work independently or on small teams, along-side other undergraduate and graduate students, in a UCLA Engineering faculty’s lab.  Each intern will be provided a research mentor who will help to identify a research topic or question that can be accomplished in the short 8 weeks.  Participants should use this opportunity to challenge themselves to contribute new knowledge to the academic community.

Weekly Progress Reports

Scholars will hone their presentation skills and prepare for fielding questions at the Final Poster Symposium by presenting a bi-monthly progress report on their research.  Participants will generate a slide set and present to the mentors and other interns on their progress and next steps.  A short question and answer session following the presentation should generate dialog about the project.

SURP Journal

Each Scholar will have their work published in our annual Summer Undergraduate Research Program Journal. Check out our past journals:

Faculty Talks

Participants will have an opportunity to hear from UCLA Engineering faculty about research conducted at our world-renown institution.  Scholars are invited to ask questions and network with our speakers. Past speakers have included:

Professional Development Workshops

Scholars will have an opportunity to participate in workshops designed to aid in their educational and professional pathways.

Research Pathways

  • Getting acclimated to research
  • Pathways to graduate school
  • Statement of purpose workshop
  • Preparing an academic research poster workshop

Career Pathways

  • Effective presentation & communication skill
  • Engineering Design Process

Final Poster Symposium

All participants are expected to present the final results of the work at the Final Poster Symposium.  Scholars are encouraged to demonstrate prototypes and/or systems.  Scholars, mentors, family, and friends are encouraged to attend.  RSVP required.

Our Programs

Interactive Systems

(Formally Wireless Health Institute)

The UCLA Interactive Systems is an REU directed by Dr. Greg Pottie. Students are able to participate in the research of the following faculty members:

Danijela Cabric
– Develop RF fingerprinting algorithms that are tuned to low cost IoT devices in order to overcome the challenges of securing distributed systems that may be conveying personal information.

Anthony Chen
– Explore a universal language for interacting with IoT and design sensing systems that enable a user to simply point at an IoT device, speak to it, or use freehand gesture to control its interactive behavior.

Ankur Mehta
– Create an intuitive design environment for printable origami robotic boats, along with seed designs in that platform, and develop an app powered by our lab’s Robot Compiler technology that lets students change parameters on the boat to see the effect on the 2D printable template and 3D model of the finished boat.

Gregory Pottie 
– Explore creation of group names with smart clothing and group displays, including creation of user interfaces for new people to intuitively understand how the clothing will interact with people and the environment.

Mani Srivastava 
– Explore privacy mechanism that allow sensory data – both at the granularity of an individual user and a group of users – to be safely released. An initial approach is to use conditional Generative Adversarial Networks (GANs) for synthesizing time series data that can replace the original measurements while preserving the features essential for letting recipient perform tasks such as training a high quality machine learning model, perform a classification with an acceptable accuracy, and safely perform control actions.

2019 SURP Interactive Systems Journal

2020 SURP Interactive Systems Journal

2021 SURP Interactive Systems Journal

Functional Nanomaterials

Functional Nanomaterials is an REU directed by Dr. Chee Wei Wong. As a part of this program, students have conducted research on several topics, including “Millimeter Scale Magnetic Shielding” and “Ultrafast Real-Time Dynamics of Frequency Microcomb Transitions.” To find out what other students did and what you could work on as part of this program, check out the 2019 SURP Functional Nanomaterials Journal!

2019 SURP Functional Nanomaterials Journal

2021 SURP Functional Nanomaterials Journal

Samueli Research Scholars

The Samueli Research Scholars program is directed by Associate Dean Veronica Santos and aims to increase the diversity of students doing research in engineering. Past scholars have researched skin tone bias in deep learning, liquefaction and sea level rise risks to California’s coastal communities, and the effects of microplastics on microbial methane production.

To find out more about what other students did and what you could work on as part of this program, check out the 2021 SURP Samueli Research Scholars Journal!

2021 SURP Samueli Research Scholars Journal

Engineering Faculty Lab REU Supplement

The engineering faculty lab REU supplement is for UCLA students who are planning to do research at UCLA over the summer with a faculty member. We do not match UCLA students with faculty members, so UCLA students must independently find faculty members to do research with during the summer.

For the students doing the engineering faculty lab REU supplement, the SURP application will merely be a formality.

ECE Fast Track

The Electrical and Computer Engineering Department’s Fast Track to Success program recruits a pool of highly talented high school students and provides them with a supportive environment and opportunities so that they can challenge themselves to succeed in their future careers as engineers in industry, academia and entrepreneurship.

The students are expected to maintain an accumulated GPA of at least 3.3 and take at least 30 units worth of honors/advanced standing classes during their four years at UCLA. These students will also be considered for summer internships, starting in their freshman year, with faculty members in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department and present their work in a special forum at the end of the summer.

2020 ECE Fast Track Journal

2021 ECE Fast Track Journal