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!
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!
Gordon Professor on two grants
Sometimes projects are a long time in brewing. Associate Professor of Mathematics Karl-Dieter Crisman recently has been involved with two grants on topics of personal interest, both of which should have impact on students and the broader community.
For the 2013-14 school year, Dr. Crisman was named one of the inaugural Faculty Fellows of Gordon's Center for Faith and Inquiry. His project, The Moral Case for Open-Source Software, brings together strands of thought on effective teaching using free resources, student participation in software development, and Christian commitments to promoting creativity and stewardship. The goal of the grant is to bring some of the theological ideas underlying open-source software to a wider audience, including the pastorate.
In 2012, Dr. Crisman was asked to join Project MOSAIC, an NSF-funded program to find new ways to introduce computation and modeling early in the college mathematics curriculum. The goal is to make it easier to introduce more realistic modeling of real-life data for students as they are introduced to math concepts, as opposed to seeing things such as calculus divorced from this data. Some of the work of the project can be seen at the website for the Math Association of America professional development workshop in the summer of 2013, held at the College of Idaho.
Gordon College hosts conference on Humanitarian relief
On March 2, 2013, Professor of Mathematics Mike Veatch brought scores of practitioners and interested students to campus for a conference on the logistics of humanitarian relief. Partnering with the MIT Humanitarian Response Lab, speakers from NGOs such as Doctors without Borders and the Salvation Army presented on a wide variety of related topics. Pike Scholar Anna Jonker '13 also presented on her senior capstone project analyzing a potential high-calorie supplement for such situations.
In 2012, Gordon people attended many conferences. Here's just a sampling:
Gordon Students Attend National Mathematics Meeting
In January 2012, the world's largest meeting of mathematicians was in Boston at the Hynes Convention Center. Naturally, Gordon students were there! Some of the things we did: