REU Site for Machine Learning: Theory and Applications

The University of Colorado at Colorado Springs (UCCS) has had an REU (Research Experiece for Undergraduates) program funded by the National Science Foundation ) for the past seven years.

UCCS is a predominantly undergraduate institution with selected graduate programs. As of Fall 2065, UCCS enrolled 11,299 students of which 9,746 were undergraduates. UCCS has been ranked as a top Western university every year since 2002 by US News and World Report. US News and World Report has nationally ranked the College of Engineering at UCCS as one of the best Masters level engineering colleges in the country. UCCS also has the reputation of being a leading institution in enrolling women students in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) majors.

Colorado Springs is a beautiful city, only miles from the famed Pikes Peak sitting atop the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains. There are many things to do outdoors as well as it has a decent city life. It's a city with about 500,000 people in the metropolitan area.

The objective of the REU site is to expose bright and motivated undergraduates who want to pursue advanced careers in Computer Science related fields to work on hands-on research projects in theory and practical applications of Machine Learning. Students will work with five professors who specialize in specific research areas, but each with a great deal of interest in machine learning.

2016 REU

The 2016 Program started on May 30th and ended on August 5th. Here is a link to the projects and final papers.

The 2016 Program is likely to start on May 31st and end on August 5th. Preliminary proposals (1-2 pages) will bedue by the end of the first week, and full proposals (2--3 pages) by the end of the second week. There will be proposal presentations (10-15 minutes) on the Friday of the second week. The mid-term papers (4-5 pages) will be due on the Friday of the sixth week. There will be mid-term presentations (15-20 minutes) on this day as well. Pre-final papers will be due on the Monday of the 10th week. Final papers (6-8 pages) will be due on the Thursday of the final week. Final presentations (20-25 minutes) will be on the last Friday of the program. All papers will use the IEEE Journal Author Style.

2015 REU

The 2015 Program started on June 1st and ended on August 7th. Here is a link to the projects and final papers.

2014 REU

The 2014 REU program was held between the 2nd of June and the 8th of August. Here is a link to the projects and final papers the students wrote.


Important Dates

The deadline for submitting a completed application is February 22, 2016 or till positions are filled. We will make offers by middle of March.


$500/week during the summer for full-time research.

Interns are expected to be full-time. Interns are expected to put in at least 8 hours of work per day. Research should be your focus during the summer. Since we are paying for a lot more than 8 hours of work, interns are expected to focus on doing well on their projects, whatever it takes.

Additional Benefits

We will pay each student $25/day for food if you are staying on campus. Food Service on campus during the summer is limited, but there are many eating establishments within 15 minutes of walking. If you are a local student, we will pay $12.50/workday for food during the summer. Dorms on campus are new and have excellent views of the Rocky Mountains. In our previous, our students stayed in Alpine Village. We will provide the basics: linens, some pots and pans and utensils. We will make arrangements for your travel, although the amount may be limited.

Project Ideas

We have many interesting projects in core machine learning and its applications. You can also look at the final papers written by the prior REU students: 2010, 2011, 2014 and 2015. Once you have been selected for a position, we will be in touch with you so that you have a project topic before you arrive. Each students will work on an individual project although there will be other projects with similar topics. Individual work will be emphasized although collaboration will be encouraged wherever possible. For more details on project ideas, look at this short writeup, or look at the faculty Web pages. This is a link to our prior REU.

Faculty Web Pages

Please look at the Web sites of Professors Kalita, Boult, Lewis, Qing and Walcott-Justice if you would like to know more about the professors involved in this REU program.

How to Apply

Please send a cover letter, an (un)official transcript, current vita containing pertinent course work, related experience, and professional and academic goals, a phone number for interview to Dr. Jugal Kalita. Please make a single PDF file containing all the documents before attaching it to your email.

Please request two individuals who know you as professor or supervisor to send letters of reference (which can be an email) to

Since successful research involves copious writing, please include at least one technical paper that you have written. This can be paper for a class.

We are thinking of using the Common REU Application process, used by many REU sites in Computer Science. However, if you don't see a link for it here, go ahead and apply as stated above.