High School Summer Research Program


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The UCLA Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science (HSSEAS) in conjunction with the Engineering Science Corps Outreach Program offers an eight-week summer program that encourages all of its high school participants to consider a future in engineering. We offer research opportunities in all areas of engineering and partner our students with a UCLA Engineering professor and a daily lab supervisor, typically a graduate student. Students conduct their research on the UCLA campus in UCLA Engineering laboratories and facilities. Individual research or a group research project will be assigned to the students for the eight-week program.

The 2017 HSSRP Application is Now Open.


Program Description

The High School Summer Research Program (HSSRP) is seeking 50 diverse juniors with high academic potential (3.6 or higher GPA) who have the initiative and interest to discover the wonderful world of innovative engineering research. HSSRP prides itself in offering underrepresented populations in Engineering this amazing opportunity. Last year, the HSSRP class included 50% females, 49% underrepresented minority groups, 30% first generation college students, and 48% low income students.

HSSRP is a full time, 40 hrs/week summer commitment that last for eight complete weeks. Students are expected to be in lab from 8am-5pm, except when they attend the mandatory workshops and presentations. Students are also not allowed to miss a day of the program. There are no mandatory weekend HSSRP activities.

Presentations from UCLA Engineering Faculty

In addition to laboratory research, students will have the weekly opportunity to attend a lunch presentation by a UCLA Engineering professor and to listen to and ask questions on their research. This great opportunity opens students’ eyes to the other fields of engineering and its applications that they may not already be familiar with.

Participate in Laboratory Research

Each day of the 8-week program, students spend at least 80% of the day in their mentor’s lab either working on a specific project assigned to them, or working alongside graduate and undergraduate students. Faculty Advisors will meet with program participants periodically to measure progress and address any participant questions. Program participants will also be assigned to a daily lab supervisor, usually a graduate student. Daily lab supervisors are requested to keep program participants working for at least 6 hours between the program’s Hours of Operation: 8am to 5pm, Monday through Friday.

Research and Posters produced by HSSRP Students: 201620152014, 2013
Information Regarding UCLA Faculty Research: UCLA Engineering Faculty Expertise Directory

Lab Tours

The objective of the Lab Tours is to see the physical lab space and hear about the amazing projects happening in other HSSRP Labs. After becoming more familiar with their labs, HSSRP students will host lab tours as well as attend the lab tours of his or her peers. Students are allowed to choose which Department labs they would like to visit. During these tours, HSSRP students get to see or showcase their peers the labspace, equipment, projects, and lab mates that they work with.

Academic Workshops

Workshops are available to all HSSRP students, both residents and commuters (even parents).

Poster Workshop

UCLA Engineering graduate students are hired to teach HSSRP students how to write and create a graphic presentation of their engineering summer research results. The poster session is a great opportunity to work with fellow students and lab mates, receive advice on design and layout and clarify and questions or uncertainties, or ask for second opinions from additional PhD student facilitators.

UCLA Engineering Admissions Workshop

Because UCLA Engineering reviews each application based on the major it applied to, we ant every HSSRP student to understand what the expectations of applying to UCLA Engineering are. To do this, we bring in a UCLA Engineering admissions counselor to talk about detailed application statistics of average applicants like the rigorousness of their classes, SAT scores, GPA, as well as what kind of person was accepted into UCLA Engineering. The purpose of this workshop is to help students understand better what a UCLA Engineer entails.

UC Personal Insight Questions Workshop

This workshop brings in a UC application reader to share what they are looking for in strong and persuasive UCS personal insight question responses. It will also focus on how to embed the HSSRP experience into a personal insight response to make the strongest engineering personal statement. All HSSRP students will write drafts of their responses to the four personal insight questions.

UC Application Workshop

The college application and admission process is brand new to most students and can often be overwhelming. However, with the right information and by planning ahead, the workload can become less intimidating and the progress can be more manageable. Students will go to a computer lab and will be walked through the general process of applying to a UC University. All HSSRP students will begin their UC application during the program.


Student Panels

Engineering Graduate Student Association Panel

In terms of research, the natural progression after being an undergraduate researcher is becoming a graduate student and doing research for a Ph.D. dissertation. To help our students understand the rigors and rewards of further pursuing research, we have multiple panels of several graduate students that are invited to talk about their own experiences in how they became interested in research as well as what kind of research they are currently undertaking. This way, our students gain insight not only into the options they will have in the future but also how to conduct research effectively and how to process the results that they find.

HSSRP Alumni Panel

Almost all of our HSSRP scholars have never worked with professors and conducted scientific research at a collegiate level. To help them better understand their role and how to best take advantage of this unique situation offered to them, our HSSRP alumni panel talks about their own experiences, highlighting the reasons behind their successes as well as what led to mistakes and how to avoid them. During these panels, the current HSSRP students will also have a chance to ask HSSRP alumni questions and talk to them about any other experiences that they may be interested in. During the last week of the program, HSSRP hosts a second alumni panel that focuses on what to do next after completing HSSRP. Applying to college, pursuing undergraduate research, and choosing a major are all topics that are discussed by this second panel.

Journal Club

A major component of performing research is to read and learn new research trends from peer journal articles. In the HSSRP Journal Club, students will read and decipher pertinent journal articles given to them by their daily lab supervisors. Theses journal articles will provide the foundational understanding necessary for HSSRP students to complete their summer research project.

A second essential component of performing research is learning how to best share and communicate research findings. HSSRP students will present the findings of their research projects to their peers in weekly journal club sessions. This allows the students to practice presenting their own research findings to HSSRP peers

Participate in a Scientific Poster Symposium

On the final day of the 8-week program, participants will present their research in a scientific poster session. Participant families, teachers, UCLA Engineering faculty and staff are invited to this poster session, which is a catered event and brings the summer program to a close. Program participants interact with their audience as individuals move from one presentation to another. All program participants will receive certificates of completion signed by Deam Jayathi Murthy. Some exceptional students will receive awards for: Best Individual Poster, Best Group Poster, Best Individual Presentation, Best Group Presentation, Best Individual Lab Report.

Poster Symposium Pictures:  2013, 2012

Industry Tech Talks

Students are invited to meet UCLA Alumni engineers from several renowned engineering firms. The purpose of these talks is to expose the students to the amazing job opportunities at top engineering firms. One goal of the talk is to highlight some engineering positions and expose students to what engineers “really do” once they get a job. As such, the speakers often talk about the scope of their work as well as their daily routine. This allows them to touch on both the difficult aspects of engineering and the parts that you encounter regularly. Another goal is for these companies to share what they are looking for when they recruit and hire engineering students.

Benefits of Program

  • Participate in Engineering Research with UCLA Faculty and Staff
  • Attend weekly presentations from the various fields of Engineering
  • Create a professional Scientific Poster of their research
  • Meet and network with peers who have similar goals and interests
  • Receive guidance and begin working on UC Application
  • Become more competitive when applying to Engineering Schools
  • For those staying on campus, experience University Residential Life


For those who would like to help us advertise this opportunity:

Program Flyer

For any questions you may have:

Frequently Asked Questions


HSSRP Alumni

Right: 2011 Group Shot on the beautiful UCLA Campus!

Bottom: 2010 Group Shot at the Rocket Launch!

Bottom-Right:2009 Group Shot at the Poster Symposium!

857 IMG_0511

(restricted) Accepted Students Links: 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013


The High School Summer Research Program’s mission is to increase awareness and interest in the field of engineering.