Research Collaborations

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The goal of SL2College Research Collaboration program is to create research opportunities for undergraduates in Sri Lankan universities through collaboration with Sri Lankan professors, post-doctoral researchers and graduate students. From the experience of graduates and current students in Sri Lankan undergraduate programs, we found there is a lack of research opportunities in the country for students who wish to pursue a research based career. We believe that creating undergraduate research opportunities will provide students with the experience and encouragement towards a research based career and help them with their graduate school prospects. We intend to build a platform where researchers and undergraduates can share their interests and find potential matches for research projects.

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Testimonies

From Maleen Abeydeera

I was introduced to Samitha, through the Sl2College program when I was looking for potential topics for my final year research project at ENTC, Moratuwa. My main area of interest was in parallel computing where as Samitha had done a significant amount of work on the stochastic optimization side. Combining both our interests we chose to pursue a parallelization strategy for the SOTA problem (which Samitha had been working on recently) whose best known solution had a complexity that precluded its wide adoption.

Although I initially treated this as just another university project, I slowly realized that a graduate level research project with the goal of publishing a peer reviewed conference paper, required a more thorough approach and attention to detail, and working with Samitha was very helpful in that regard. Samitha helped me to understand the value of a proper literature review, and helped me a great deal with learning how to present my research to an audience of my peers, which is a vital requirement for a successful academic career.

Carrying out such a research project during my undergraduate days provided me with a taste of what research is like and helped me make make much more informed decisions on career related matters. I would encourage every undergraduate who is contemplating higher studies to get involved in some research early on and the Sl2College research collaboration program is wonderful opportunity in that regard.

This collaboration has yielded a publication titled “GPU Parallelization of Stochastic on Time Arrival Problem” which has been accepted at “21st annual IEEE International Conference on High Performance Computing (HiPC 2014)”, held in Goa, India, from 17th to 20th December, 2014. Maleen is now a PhD student at the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA.

From Samitha Samaranayake

I was introduced to Maleen through SL2College as part of a pilot program to enable research collaborations between students in Sri Lanka and overseas researchers. It was clear from our initial discussions that Maleen was a motivated student with a strong technical background and the maturity to work independently with limited guidance, all very important characteristics for the success of a remote collaboration of this nature. After spending some time discussing a number of potential project ideas, we decided to pursue the parallalization of the stochastic routing algorithm I have been working on known as the stochastic on-time arrival problem (SOTA). Maleen has made excellent progress on the problem in the last 4 months. Understanding the different computational bottlenecks of the problem, many of which can not be resolved via trivial parallalization, and coming up with new ideas to reduce the computation time significantly. The project has been successful in advancing the state of the art for this problem, and we will be submitting the results to an international conference on parallel computing shortly.

Interviews

Why Undergraduates should do Research?
Listen to Professor Saman Amarasinghe from MIT, USA speaking to SL2College on the importance of undergraduate research.

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Interested?

If you are studying in Sri Lanka and are interested in collaborating with any of our listed advisers please fill the application form and we will get in touch with you.

  Application Form  

We will match with one of our advisers based on your research interests. Please note that we might not be able to match every applicant due to limited resources. If you are interested in becoming a mentor, please send us an email at research-collab@sl2college.org

For more information contact SL2College at research-collab@sl2college.org

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