David Harold Blackwell Summer Research Institute

Application deadline extended to February 15 for The David Harold Blackwell Summer Research Institute focused on undergraduate students who aspire to achieve his level of excellence and widen the participation of African-Americans in obtaining PhDs in the mathematical sciences. 

Program Websitehttps://ww3.math.ucla.edu/david-harold-blackwell-summer-research-institute/

Application Deadline: Feb 15, 2021

Application Websitehttps://www.mathprograms.org/db/programs/991

Rationale and Succinct Description of Program: David Harold Blackwell is widely regarded as the top African-American mathematician of the 20th century.  As the first African-American elected to the National Academy of Sciences who made seminal contributions to the fields of statistics, economics, probability theory, and information theory, he epitomized the word excellence in all fields he touched. African Americans comprise 4% of PhDs in engineering and 3% of PhDs in mathematics granted from 2010-2020.  We aim to honor Blackwell’s legacy by attempting to increase the number of undergraduate students who aspire to achieve his level of excellence and widen participation of African-Americans in obtaining PhDs in the mathematical sciences.  The David Harold Blackwell Summer Research Institute is a six-week competitive summer activity designed to provide research experience to talented undergraduate students. Students will be paid to conduct research in Applied Probability, Analysis, or Theoretical Computer Science, under supervision of faculty members who are experts in these areas.  Specifically, Todd Coleman (Stanford Bioengineering), Wilfrid Gangbo (UCLA Mathematics), and Jelani Nelson (UC Berkeley EECS) will mentor 6 students directly (two per faculty member).  Contingent upon success with the pandemic, the 2021 research program will take place on the UCLA and UC Berkeley campuses, from June 21 to July 30, 2021 and will conclude with a trip to Berkeley during the last week where all program participants will meet with each other and share their work, hosted by the Simons Institute for the Theory of Computing.  After the six-week program, each participant will continue receiving advice from their program mentor for graduate school applications and get connected as needed to students with more experience.

 
Research Project Themes: Optimal Mass Transportation, the Calculus of Variations, Machine Learning, Theoretical Computer Science.