Report on JIFRESSE Summer Internship Program (JSIP)

JSIP successful completion
Wednesday, September 19, 2018


The JIFRESSE Summer Internship Program (JSIP) was initiated in January 2018, with a purpose to provide UCLA undergraduate students an opportunity to conduct cutting-edge research under the guidance of experienced mentors at JPL and UCLA/JIFRESSE and create a collaborative community for both students and mentors. The program runs from June 18 to August 24, 2018 for 10 weeks.

To be eligible for the program, the students need to be a continuing student and eligible for fall quarter registration at UCLA with at least three quarters completed at UCLA and a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5. After careful reviews of the applications, five students have been awarded the internship for their outstanding academic performance and passion for science and engineering for the following projects:

Project 1: A combined passive microwave and active radar cloud and precipitation retrieval system.

  • Intern: Arushi Sinha, Environmental Science (BS)
  • Mentors: Dr. Jonathan Jiang (JPL) / Prof. Kuo-Nan Liou (UCLA)

Project 2: Determine the influence of rainforest on rainfall over the Amazon and Congo.

  • Intern: Sarah Worden, Physics (BS)
  • Mentors: Dr. Junjie Liu (JPL) / Prof. Rong Fu (UCLA)

Project 3: Characterization of the Tropical Precipitation-Moisture Relationship with Observations from GNSS Radio Occultation Data.

  • Intern: Yi-Hung Kuo, Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences (PhD)
  • Mentors: Drs. Joseph Turk, Manuel de la Torre Juarez, Chi Ao (JPL) / Prof. David Neelin (UCLA)

Project 4: Enhancing Forward Modeling Capability for Weather OSSE.

  • Intern: Jingjing Nie, Chemical Engineering (BS)
  • Mentors: Dr. Noppasin Niamsuwan (JPL) / Dr. Yu Gu (UCLA)

Project 5: Characterizing tropical forest chronosequences with lidar and radar remote sensing.

  • Intern: Qi Qiao, Environmental and Water Resources Engineering (MS)
  • Mentors: Dr. Naiara Pinto (JPL) / Prof. Yongkang Xue (UCLA)

To facilitate the intern-mentor interactions, JIFRESSE organized the following activities during the course of the program:

  • Program kick-off on June 19, 2018 at JIFRESSE Conference Room, 4242 Young Hall, UCLA
  • Bi-weekly project updates at JIFRESSE Conference Room, 4242 Young Hall, UCLA
  • Mid-term progress review on July 18, 2018 at JIFRESSE Conference Room, 4242 Young Hall, UCLA
  • Final project presentation on August 22, 2018 at JPL Room 233-305E
  • Final written reports

During the Kick-off event, Prof. Liou and Dr. Friedl gave welcome remarks and briefly talked about the importance of this program to both UCLA and JPL.  Drs. Hui Su and Yu Gu overviewed the program, including the conception of the program and the requirements for students and mentors. The interns and mentors introduced themselves and presented an introduction of each project. Prof. Jochen Stutz, Chair of the Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, also came to the meeting and encouraged more UCLA faculties to participate in this program in the future.

During the final project report event, the intern students visited the JPL guided by Dr. Jonathan Jiang, a Principal Scientist and the Supervisor of JPL Aerosol and Cloud group. Each of the interns gave a talk for about 15 minutes to showcase what they have completed during the 10 weeks and summarize their research activities and findings, plus 2-3 minutes for questions. Prof. Rong Fu (Associate Director of JIFRESSE), Drs. Hui Su and Yu Gu (Assistant Directors), and many scientists from JPL participated in this event. The intern students have received valuable feedback and high remarks from senior scientists about their research and presentations. JIFRESSE Manager Ms. Nancy Hom and Senior Fund Manager Ms. Danielle Antonios also helped to organize and participated in the event to talk to a number of JPL PIs who are affiliated with JIFRESSE.

The program was successfully completed on August 24, 2018, with written report submitted by each of the JSIP interns. For the detailed reports on the intern’s research, please see the JSIP Research Reports.