Welcome Class of 2019!
With just a few weeks before classes begin, we're excited about both returning students and a strong incoming class of math majors. What were your best summer experiences, mathematically and spiritually? What are you excited about?
Also, please keep watching the Math Events page for information about the fall, such as our fall kickoff cookout, scheduled for Thursday, September 3rd!
Student presenting at Spring MAA Meeting
Graduating senior Peter Story just can't quit doing math and computer science! He presented at Keene State College in New Hampshire at the end of May, giving a talk about "Smartphone Movement as a Biometric".
This occurred at the Spring Meeting of the Math Association of America. Gordon will be hosting the Fall Meeting in November 2015 - be sure to come join us!
We had about 20 graduating seniors at commencement this year; in recognition of this, some of the seniors decided to do something unusual with their mortarboards. Can you figure out what familiar mathematical constant they approximated?
During the time at Gordon, students develop close working relationships with faculty. This year, we celebrated this with a nice dinner and reminiscing time with all the seniors! Many already have jobs or graduate school options, including working for Raytheon and studying at Georgia Tech. Some will be teaching at high schools or middle schools near you!
Gordon team wins at North Shore math conference
The fifth annual North Shore Undergraduate Mathematics Conference was held at Merrimack College on March 28th. Four Gordon students attended and won the team math competition! Other activities included an invited talk on combinatorial game theory, student presentations by undergraduates at colleges such as Western New England and Salem State, and a lot of socializing at lunch with other people who enjoy wearing Pi Day shirts.
Next year's conference is scheduled to be at Salem State; contact Dr. Crisman for further information.
Gordon students to do research this summer
Two Gordon mathematics students will pursue undergraduate research this summer. Freshman Ethan Kang will work with Dr. Veatch on a Gordon-sponsored project in "Robust Optimization", while sophomore math and chemistry double major Rachel Olugbemi will travel to Tyler, Texas to research chemical graph theory in an NSF-sponsored research experience.
Many Gordon students do independent research as part of their undergraduate studies; contact any faculty member to talk about how this works!
Gordon student studying in Budapest
This spring, we pray for a good journey and studies for junior Wes Nelson, who will be studying in Budapest, Hungary, via the Budapest Semesters in Mathematics. This rigorous program has allowed top Gordon students to take a huge variety of courses (in English!) with other students from around the US in one of the world's mathematical capitals.
Think you might be interested? Talk to your advisor and the Global Education Office; you will need to take Real Analysis or Algebraic Structures before or during application.
Three of Gordon's four mathematics professors have had well-earned time to investigate scholarly matters - all of which they hope to bring back to the classroom too.
Math, Programming, and the Developing World
There are math opportunities to serve around the globe. In 2014, Dr. Crisman was invited to teach the basics of using programming to explore mathematics abroad, and hopes to bring lessons learned back to Gordon students, perhaps finding connections for future internships or employment.
In the tropics of Chennai, the Institute for Mathematical Sciences hosts graduate students from all over India. Dr. Crisman ran the beginning of a course for these students, focused on using the open-source program Sage to do research. You can catch the lectures and videos on YouTube!
Later, he ran a course called "Experimental Mathematics with Sage" for the African Institute for Mathematical Sciences in Cape Town. AIMS students from the entire African continent prepare for Ph.D. programs, industry, or to teach in their home countries. Working on homework can be fun with forty of your closest friends from Algeria to Zambia!
Museum of Math in NYC
In March 2014 the math club organized a daytrip to the National Museum of Mathematics in Manhattan. The only museum in the nation dedicated to mathematics, the MoM opened in 2012 and has exhibits and programs for all ages. The participants got to see not only the museum but took in lunch and visited Central Park during this one-day trip
Congratulations to Olivia Gray and Katharine Adamyk, two senior mathematics majors! Olivia successfully presented and defended her honors thesis "Robust Optimization of Queues and Variations on a Series Line" this past December, while Katharine is entering the PhD program in mathematics at the University of Colorado.
Also congratulations to junior Joy Kimmel, who has been accepted to several REU programs for the summer. She will be attending a program at Ohio Wesleyan University, working on weather modeling with several other students from across the country.
Gordon people attended many math-related conferences during 2013-14. In addition to the Joint Mathematics Meetings and MAA Sectional Meeting mentioned below, in April 2014 we hosted the fourth annual North Shore Undergraduate Math Conference.
Last November, Dr. Veatch gave a talk in Minneapolis at a national operations research conference. The topic, robust optimization, included some research done with Gordon senior Olivia Gray.
Drs. Crisman, Senning, and Stout all attended the May/June 2013 meeting of the Association of Christians in the Mathematical Sciences at Bethel University.
MIT Graduate Student Speaks
In 2013, the proposal of an MIT graduate student in Operations Research, Peng Shi, was selected as the new way to help select schools for thousands of Boston public school students. Peng's combination of listening and robust analysis led to this adoption, showing data-driven simulation is a powerful tool for guiding public policy decisions. Peng is also the president of MIT's Graduate Christian Fellowship, and spoke about all of these things on January 30th, 2014 in a well-attended Math Forum event in KOSC 109.
Students and Faculty Present at Joint Mathematics Meetings
Several Gordon faculty and one Gordon student attended the Joint Mathematics Meetings in Baltimore, the largest mathematics meeting in the world, during the first few days of the new semester in 2014.
Senior Katharine Adamyk presented a poster on her research into genes, games, and graphs from a summer research experience, and Dr. Crisman presented a poster on the new Mentoring Math Circles partnership with Girls Inc. of Lynn. Will we see you at the next meeting in San Antonio?
Gordon Students Place in Regional Math Competition
Mathematics seniors Olivia Gray and Katharine Adamyk placed second out of dozens of teams in the team math competition at the Northeastern Sectional meeting of the MAA in November. The problems were from geometry, calculus, number theory, and other areas. This is the fourth year Gordon has participated in the competition.
Summer Student Research in High Gear
Summer break doesn't keep Gordon mathematics students from pursuing new knowledge. Olivia Gray '14 and Juliann Booth '15 are engaged in two different types of applied research. Professor Jonathan Senning points out that it's not just useful, either - "there's beauty to be seen; here it comes by way of trying to do something useful."
Professor Mike Veatch is working with Olivia on investigating how manufacturing systems for everything from circuit boards to battleships can become 'clogged', and how to tell how congested a system is. Juliann's goal while working with Dr. Senning is to develop a computer tool using a method for generating random numbers following some constraints that can solve global optimization problems. See the full article for more details on their exciting summer of research!
Off to Graduate School
We'd like to congratulate seniors Melissa Haire and Leonard Stevenson, who will both be starting PhD programs this fall! Melissa will be headed to the University of Connecticut, while Leonard will be studying at Drexel University in Philadelphia.
Gordon Math program receives MAA grant
After two successful pilot events, Gordon College has received a grant from the Tensor Foundation and the Math Association of America in conjunction with the middle school program at Girls Inc. of Lynn. Gordon students will run a "Mentoring Math Circle" to inspire girls to adopt positive attitudes and curiosity towards mathematics. The Mentoring Math Circle will meet six times a semester (including a field trip) with Girls Inc. students to facilitate an exploratory mathematical experience.
The photo is from one of the pilot events, on soap films and math. Everyone had fun and some people even got a little wet!
High-Performance Computing comes to Gordon
For the past year, Professor Jonathan Senning (who holds a joint appointment in Mathematics and Computer Science) has been helping teach students to enter the cutting-edge world of high-performance computing with the help of grants from XSEDE, the Shodor Foundation, and the HPC Educators Program (SC12). Along with Peter Story '14 he attended a conference and built our own LittleFe small high-performance cluster, and students in the Parallel and High Performance Computing class in Spring 2013 learned about topics such as using graphics cards and Hadoop - all for distributed computing.
Read more about these opportunities in Gordon's Faculty Central blog post about it!