Gordon College logo

Math Events

FALL 2019 EVENTS

MATH/CS COOKOUT AND VOLLEYBALL GAMEFirst social event!

September 3rd, 5–7 p.m., Dr. Tuck's house

The Department of Mathematics and Computer Science has a long-standing tradition of hosting a welcome picnic for freshmen and returning students. Be ready to vie for the Math vs. CS volleyball crown!

RSVP to Ms. Cheetham; you must reply to get a ride (though you can also easily walk there).

MATH FORUM—Mathematics in Budapest

Date, time, and location TBD

The country of Hungary is well-known for its rich mathematical heritage and unique approach to mathematics education. Join senior Anne Lemmer as she reports on her experience studying abroad at the new Budapest Semester in Mathematics Education program. 

Departmental Convocation

Friday, October 11th
KOSC 124, 10:25–11:10 a.m.

Join other mathematics and computer science students for a time of fellowship, worship, prayer, fun, reflection, and looking forward. 

MATH FORUM—English Mathematicians and Algebra

Thursday, November 21st
Location TBD, 4:30 p.m.

Join Dr. Stout as he talks about some of his favorite mathematicians from England and the impact they had on making algebra about more than formulas!

Fall Math Association of America Northeastern Section Meeting

Friday, November 22nd
Babson University, roughly 3–9 p.m.

A fun team competition, invited speakers, and student talks from all over New England! Come especially to see some of our senior present on interesting math history topics. See Dr. Crisman about registering and transportation.

 

SPRING 2019 EVENTS

MATH FORUMThere’s Got to Be an Easier Way! Exploiting Symmetry

Tuesday, February 5th
KOSC 127, 12–1 p.m.

Join Dr. Veatch to try out some interesting problems from the Putnam Exam that might seem hard, but work very nicely with the use of a little geometric symmetry.

MATH FORUMMersenne and More: Faith and Math in the 1600s

This talk will introduce you to a sampling of mathematicians from the seventeenth century who thought seriously about faith, including names you may have heard of like Pascal and Descartes, and others you may not have, like Fermat and Napier. We'll especially point out the intriguing Marin Mersenne, who knew many of these people personally and never gave up either his fascination with math or his battle against deists.

Thursday, February 21st
KOSC 127, 3:30–4:30 p.m.

Dr. Crisman

MATH FORUMThe St. Petersburg Paradox: Making Decisions with Rare Events

In 1738 Daniel Bernoulli published an apparent paradox about games of chance that have unbounded rewards. This talk looks at ways of explaining this paradox that has developed over the years, and more generally explaining how people make decisions in the face of uncertainty. The story takes us through some infinite series, mathematical expectation, and utility theory.

Tuesday, March 5th
KOSC 127, 12–1 p.m.
Mike Veatch, Professor of Mathematics

Departmental Convocation

Friday, March 22nd
KOSC 124, 10:25–11:10 a.m.

Join other mathematics and computer science students for a time of fellowship, worship, prayer, fun, reflection, and looking forward. As always, there will be worship and/or a brief message of reflection.

Ninth Annual North Shore Undergraduate Mathematics Conference

Saturday, April 6th
GORDON COLLEGE, roughly 9:30 a.m.–3:30 p.m.

A fun team competition, math coloring, and student talks from all over New England! The invited speaker this year is Dr. Scott Taylor of Colby College (Gordon '98). (Website—we had a great time!)

MATH FORUMCounting in Candy Crush and Scoring in Sagrada: Exploring Combinatorics and Graph Theory through Games

Professor Dana Rowland from Merrimack College will talk about her research in counting the number of configurations in the popular game Candy Crush, as well as how combinatorics and graphs help understand other games.

Thursday, April 11th
KOSC 127, 4:45–5:45 p.m.
Dana Rowland, Professor of Mathematics, Merrimack College

Senior Theses

Tuesday, May 7th
KOS 124, 3:00–4:30 p.m.

Both of these double major seniors have very interdisciplinary theses for honors in mathematics.  Come and enjoy them just before finals begin!

  • "Many-Valued Logic" by Xuan (Joshua) Yang: It is not difficult to find a proposition cannot be judged simply by using true or false. Many times, people can say “I don't know.” Logic should consider this third situation; this is called three-valued logic.  Moreover, for a1.8-meter tall person, we cannot simply say that this person is tall or short, and of course, we cannot say "I don't know;" we will apply fuzzy logic to these propositions.
  • "Broadening the Field: The Life and Work of Charlotte Angas Scott" by Julianne McKay: Charlotte Angas Scott (1858-1931) was a British algebraic geometer who spent her career at Bryn Mawr College in Pennsylvania. She was one of the first women to receive a PhD in mathematics, and she utilized her influence to create opportunities for the women who came after her. In this presentation we briefly explore Scott’s role in women’s higher education in mathematics, and then focus on her contributions to the field of algebraic geometry through the historical study of plane curves and their singularities.

CONFERENCES

Mathematics Association of America Conference

This is the big fall New England conference, with great invited talks, student team math competition, opportunities to share your own work, and a banquet. Typically the weekend before Thanksgiving. In 2015, Gordon hosted over 150 visitors for the conference right here in the Ken Olsen Science Center!

(For summer research students, there is also a spring version usually in late May or early June.)

North Shore Undergraduate Mathematics Conference

This conference began with a fun team math competition between Salem State and Gordon and has blossomed into an annual local conference with student talks from all over Eastern New England, invited speakers, and more! Usually in April.

Joint Mathematics Meetings

The largest annual gathering of mathematicians in the world, the Joint Meetings has a wealth of talks from high-level research to student poster sessions, panels on pedagogy, and interactive art or the booths in the exhibit hall. Gordon annually has between three and eight representatives (including faculty, students, and alumni); many summer research students will present here. A highlight is the ACMS reception and dinner, which has a speaker relating a short talk connecting our faith with our mathematical passion.

Association of Christians in the Mathematical Sciences Conference

This conference began in the late 1970s with our own Dr. Stout as one of the first attendees. It is a biannual conference of Christian mathematicians and computer scientists, which now has criss-crossed North America, coming this summer at Illinois Wesleyan University, and before that in Charleston, South Carolina. Gordon hosted the conference in 1999, and we take students as often as they are available and the conference is in the Northeastern United States.

MATH FORUM GENERAL INFORMATION

Gordon College's Math Forum is a bi-weekly gathering of mathematically-inclined people from all over campus. The format ranges from problem-solving to guest speakers from the industry, to special talks about interesting topics or people in mathematics. Math Forum has typically been on Tuesdays or Thursdays at noon or at 4:45 p.m.

Students, please let us know if there are other events or topics you would enjoy! To give you ideas, some Math Forum speakers and other events from the past are listed below. 

  • Mathematics and Faith Seminar—Led by math faculty
  • Welcome to the Fourth Dimension!—Dr. Satyan Devadoss, Williams College
  • Coordinating Revenue Management Decisions in Airline Alliances—Prof. Robert Shumsky of Dartmouth, Tuck Business School
  • The Life and Mathematics of Ramanujan—Prof. Michael Bradley of Merrimack College
  • The Mysterious Connection between Voting and Statistics—Sarah Berube (student)
  • Origami: How to Do Math Without Scissors or Glue—Dr. Thomas Hull, Western New England College
  • Summer Research Report (offered many times)—Wesley Nelson, Rachel Olugbemi, Jess Wild, Leah Miller, Luke Cui, Sunny Kim,... and many others!
  • Using LaTeX—Lauren Meitzler and Maya Bam (students)
  • The Futurama Theorem—Prof. Dana Ernst of Plymouth State University, NH
  • "Old School" Graphing in Polar Coordinates—Dr. Senning
  • Bringing Math to Inner City Schools—Prof. Robert Case of Northeastern University
  • Color and Facial Perception and the Mathematics of Voting—Dr. Crisman, joint with CIPHER seminar
  • Let the Data Do the Talking: Empirical Bayes Classifiers and Behavioral Advertising—Dr. Veatch
  • Amicable Numbers—What are they?—Dr. Stout
  • Connecting Voting Theory and Graph Theory—Dr. Crisman
  • Fractals and the Liberal Arts—Students from MAT 353 Real Analysis
  • What is Topology?—Gordon alumnus and Colby College professor Scott Taylor
  • Visual Algebra—Dr. Nathan Carter, Bentley University
  • Integration Bee—moderated by Dr. Veatch
  • Introduction to Sage—Dr. Crisman
  • Saving Lives by Bringing Applied Math and Operations Research Scholarship into Action—Dr. Prashant Yadev, MIT-Zaragoza International Logistics Program
  • Humanitarian Logistics—Dr. Jarrod Goentzel, MIT
  • Using Simulations to Guide the Reform of Boston School Assignments—Peng Shi, MIT
  • Sonya, Karl and Fyodor: Intellectual life in Europe during the last half of the 19th century—Dr. Robert Brabenec, Wheaton College (IL)
  • What is Numerical Analysis, Anyway?—Dr. Senning
  • The Nature of Craftsmanship in Mathematics and Computer Science—Prof. Greg Crow, Point Loma Nazarene University
  • Math in the Real World—Mike Ahearn, Vice President for Finance and Administration
  • Why are the lines in Lane so long? An Introduction to Queuing Theory—Jane Eisenhauer and Stephen Rizzo (students)
  • Intro to Math Circles—Dr. Crisman
  • What do Math Majors Do After Gordon?—Recent Alumni
  • Sudoku and Graphs—Jeffrey Fraser (student)
  • Happy Birthday, Euler! From Graphs to the Fields Medal—Dr. Crisman
  • Don't Forget to Check Your Digits—Symposium 2007 "Authenticity"—talk by students about check digits
  • Dodgson's Method in Voting—Dr. Tommy Ratliff, Wheaton College (MA)
  • Math Awareness Month Talk: What Makes Your Vote Matter—Dr. Crisman with Dr. Brink and Dr. Melkonian-Hoover from Political Science
  • Joint with Health Professions Seminar—Dr. Kim Pearson of Harvard School of Public Health on biostatistics and testing for gene links to disease
  • Joint with CS and Chemistry/Physics Senior Seminar—Dr. Michael Orrison of Harvey Mudd College on applications of matrix representations