*The Department of Mathematics & Statistics would like to welcome:*

Dr. Brendan Kelly, 2015 recipient of the Joseph R. Levenson Memorial Teaching Prize at Harvard University and TCNJ alumnus, on Tuesday, September 8 at 12:30 pm in SCP 101.

**Title:** How Many Ways Can I Get to the Coffee Shop

**Abstract: **The ability to pose good questions is critical in the problem solving process. This talk will begin with a simple question that will frame a conversation on mathematics, education, and your college experience. The mathematical enterprise of digging deeper will send us down the rabbit hole as we investigate variations of the title question. We will explore the importance of asking good questions and techniques to empower students to ask good questions.

*The only prerequisite for this talk is an inquisitive mind and a willingness to actively participate.*

Hope to see you there!

**E-portfolio presentation schedule
(Mathematics Secondary Education capstone presentations)
Tuesday, May 12, 2015, 5:00 – 7:00pm**

**Room 222**

*Evaluators: Ruth Sweeney and Dr. Steffan Marcus*

Alexa Swartz

Julie Bradley

Kristen Wiley

Kyle Pak

Kelly Cullinane

**Room 229**

*Evaluators: Dr. Bob Cunningham and Marian Palumbo*

Sarah Ayad

Jessica Gonzalez

Troy O’Connor

Bridget Williams

Connor Given

**Room 230 **

*Evaluators: Dr. Cathy Liebars and Saundra Conte*

Matt Fleck

Tom Andrews

Katelyn Eyer

Melissa Garcia

Rachel Reenstra

It is important that we support our students who have done a lot of work and are excited at the prospect of showing off their accomplishments. Moreover, it will also give us the opportunity to learn about the interests of our colleagues and about what kinds of things are going on in the capstone.

34 of our students will be delivering posters on their work in the capstone.

9 of our students will be delivering posters on work they’ve done in addition to their coursework.

4 of our students will be giving 20-minute talks.

The posters will be delivered in 3 sessions in Roscoe Rooms 201/202. There are math/stat students in each of the sessions:

Session A: 12:30-1:45

Session B: 1:45-3:00

Session C: 3:00-4:15

The four talks will be in Room 105 in SSB:

**Ami Shah** – 12:30 – 12:50 – “Minimizing Acquired Drug Resistance in a Hybrid Spatial Model of Tumor Growth – Jana Gevertz

**Syndi Barish** 12:50 – 1:10 – “Modelling Oncolytic Adenoviruses with Dendritic Cell Injections for Cancer Therapy” – Jana Gevertz

**Timothy Salmon** – 1:10 – 1:30 – “Chaos and Bifurcation in the Predator-Prey Model” – Chamont Wang

**Daniel Kolano** – 1:30 – 1:50 – “A Mathematical Model of Quadrotor UAV” – Chamont Wang

**Evan Levy ’14** — “Engaging Tasks Using Multiple Representations”

**Jackie Witt ’10** — “Tiered Lessons in the High School Math Classroom”

**Robert Cunningham** & **Farshid Safi** — ”Developing Rich Mathematical Tasks: Enhancing Relational Understanding”

**Kevin Dziuba ’02** & **Jennifer Gerry ’02** — ”Standards in the High School Math Classroom: Assessments and Grading”

**Erin Suozzo ’12** — ”Differentiated Activities for Middle School Math”

**Jameel Misbahuddin ’07** & **Stephanie Niemis ’07** — ”Effective Questioning in Math Classes”

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Dr. Hans U. Boden from McMaster University on Wednesday, April 29 at 11:00am in SCP 229.

**Title:** Virtual Knots and Knotted Surfaces

**Abstract: **This talk will be a gentle introduction to virtual knot theory, which was discovered by Louis Kauffman in 1999. We will define virtual knots and show how to view these as knots in thickened surfaces, and also how every virtual knot determines a knotted surface in 4-space via “balloon inflation.” We will also discuss how to define useful quantities to distinguish between virtual knots and present some recent results that grew out of undergraduate summer research projects conducted in 2013 and 2014.

Dr. Rachel Ward on Wednesday, April 22 at 11:00am in SCP 229.

**Title:** Geometric Clustering: Efficient Algorithm and Guaranteed Optimality

**Abstract:** k-means clustering aims to partition a set of n points into k clusters in such a way that each observation belongs to the cluster with the nearest mean, and such that the sum of squared distances from each point to its nearest mean is minimal. In general, this is a hard optimization problem, requiring an exhaustive search over all possible partitions of the data into k clusters in order to find the optimal clustering. At the same time, fast heuristic algorithms for the k-means optimization problem are often applied in many data processing applications, despite having few guarantees on the clusters they produce. In this talk, we will introduce an efficient algorithm for solving the k-means optimization problem, along with geometric conditions on a set of data such that the algorithm is guaranteed to find the optimal k-means clustering for the data. For points drawn from separated balls, the important quantities are the distances between the centers of the balls compa

red to the relative densities of points within them. We will also discuss connections to spectral clustering and the question of partitioning data arising from nonlinear shapes such as concentric circles. We will conclude by discussing several open questions related to this work. This is joint work with P. Awasthi, A. Bandeira, M. Charikar, R. Krishnaswamy, and S. Villar.

Dr. Rachel Ward received her PhD at Princeton University’s Program of Applied and Computational Mathematics. She is currently an assistant professor at The University of Texas at Austin. Before joining UT Austin, Dr. Ward was an NSF Postdoctoral Fellow at Courant Institute, New York University. Her research interests include mathematical signal processing, applied harmonic analysis, compressed sensing, theoretical computer science, and machine learning. Dr. Ward is the recipient of several prestigous awards including Barry M. Goldwater, NSF Graduate Fellowship, Alfred P. Sloan Fellowship, and an NSF Career Award to name a few.

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The 2014 top 5 teams, in rank order were MIT, Harvard, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, University of Waterloo, Carnegie-Mellon.

Congratulations to all of our students!

]]>Committee: Cliifford, Reimer, Hingston (Dept meeting at 12:00)

Wed April 15, 11:00 Conor Kelton. “Nonnegative Matrix Factorization and the Estimation of Dimensionality in Gene Expression”

Committee: Ochs, Holmes, Hingston

Wed April 15, 12:00 Vince Longo. “Knot invariants from spanning surfaces”

Committee: Curtis, Papantonopoulou, Hingston

All talks in Room 229. Talks should last 35-40 minutes. Followed by questions.

]]>The Mathematics and Statistics Department is pleased to announce that Junior Alana Huszar, a Junior Mathematics major, has been named a 2015 Goldwater Scholar. Alana is a very familiar face to anyone in the Mathematics and Statistics Department. She’s one of our student tutors and, if you’ve ever stopped by the office, it’s likely you’ve gotten a cheerful greeting or an upbeat comment from her, since she’s usually here even when she isn’t working. She has a long list of scholastic accomplishments, and we are very proud that she has now added Goldwater Scholar to that list.

Alana the fourth department major to have received this accolade. Our previous winners were Syndi Barish ’15 (double major with Biology) who won last year, Glen Wilson ’10, and Nick Locantore ’94. Goldwater Scholars are chosen as a result of a highly selective national competition which honors exceptional undergraduate students who plan to pursue graduate degrees in the STEM fields and careers in research.

Congratulations Alana!

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