WASHINGTON, PA (April 19, 2018)—Five Washington & Jefferson (W&J) math faculty members and 13 students traveled to the Allegheny Mountain Section of the Mathematical Association of America (MAA) spring meeting held at the Pennsylvania State University Behrend Campus, where eight students presented their work.
Jeremy N. Glasner ’19, Joshua Hnat ’19, Madison Lydic’19, Jordan Melko ’19, Bingliang Lu ’18, Shulai Yang ’18, Madison Babicka ’18, and Kashmir Sainiak ’18 presented talks based on their work in W&J’s MathTalk courses, open to juniors and seniors. Their projects covered a range of topics including an examination of number series, prime numbers, proofs, and symbols.
“My topic, Plus and Equals, allowed me to reflect on my experience here at W&J,” said Kashmir, a math major with a concentration in computational science. “I was able to learn the history of the two symbols and their uses outside of the mathematics world, much of which was a summary of my liberal arts education.”
Presenting to an audience of their peers and professors gave the students valuable experience outside of the classroom that the students appreciated.
“Meetings like this one will broaden the scope of our knowledge, specifically for the math majors and minors,” math major Bingliang said. “Also, I think it is important to experience what it feels like to be standing in front of an audience and give a talk. After all, some of the students might end up working in academia as professors or teachers and this type of experience will undoubtedly pave the path for career choices like that.”
Professor of Mathematics Roman Wong, Ph.D., who accompanied the students to the conference along with four other members of the W&J math faculty, is proud that the College can offer opportunities like this one to students.
“It is the goal of the Math Department that our majors should have some exposure to the math community outside of W&J,” Dr. Wong said. “Bringing students to regional and national math conferences makes W&J more visible to the math community nationwide. Students who attend and present at conferences can include that experience in their resume when they apply for jobs and graduate schools.”
In addition to the student presenters, Xueyi Lei ’18, Terrence Dane Richardson ’18, Cecilia Fitzgerald ’20, Caitlin Ann Guthrie ’21, and Cheryl Lynn Fergerson ’20 also attended the meeting.
About Washington & Jefferson College
Washington & Jefferson College, located in Washington, Pa., is a selective liberal arts college founded in 1781. Committed to providing each of its students with the highest-quality undergraduate education available, W&J offers a traditional arts and sciences curriculum emphasizing interdisciplinary study and independent study work. For more information about W&J, visit www.washjeff.edu, or call 888-W-AND-JAY.