Kershner Scholars Awarded
Fourteen students are the recipients of the 2020 John Kershner Scholar designation. This honor is awarded to students of good and regular standing in the College for “proficiency in mathematics,” and includes an honorary stipend.
The following seniors are second time recipients: Xinyang Chen '20, Ruosi Sun '20, Chenxu Wang '20, Fanzhou Wei '20, Yoni Weiss '20 and Zhengyi Yu '20.
First-time awardees include: Gregory S. Bolet '20, Thu H. Do '21, Shuyuan Dong '20, Andrew D. Kaplan '21, Aiden P. Kenny '20, Lingfeng Shan '20, Nart Shalqini '21, Zhengyi Xiao '20, and Xinwen Xu '21.
Outside the Classroom: Students Learn, Give Conference Talks
Math students at F&M take the opportunity to learn and grow beyond the classroom. Recently the Math Department sponsored field trips to the Fall EPaDel (eastern Pennsylvania and Delaware) Conference of the MAA (Mathematical Association of America) at DeSales University, Center Valley, PA; and the Spring EPaDel Conference of the MAA at Kings College, Scranton, PA and the Spring Moravian Student Math Conference at Moravian College, Bethlehem, PA.
Students experience talks and activities led by established mathematicians and short talks by undergraduates, in addition to the opportunity to present a talks themselves. The one-day conferences this past year even showcased a "mathemagician" and a mime who also conducts sports analytics.
The EPaDel group at DeSales University this fall got to experience talks about true stories of becoming a mathematician, using mathematics in Hollywood to create snow and waves and hair and other animated effects, and how mathematical thinking can create a curious citizenry. During the talk given by MAA President Michael Dorff, F&M student Rafael Silva answered a question from the speaker, and for his efforts, was called down to select a t-shirt to take home!
Three F&M math students presented talks at the EPaDel-MAA Conference last spring at King's College: Yike Gong '19, "Two Slit Camera;" Nart Shalqini '21, "Non-unique Factorizations;" and Zhengyi Xiao '21, "Gauss-Bonnet Theorem Applied to Flatland."
For students who attended the Moravian Student Math Conference, their favorite talk focused on statistical modeling of the Zika virus.
Top Academic Honors Given for Math Excellence
Aiden P. Kenny '20 is this year's recipient of the Ronald K. Stuart Mathematics Prize. The Stuart Prize is the highest honor the F&M Mathematics Department grants and is awarded each year to the senior, or seniors, who accomplishes the best mathematical work of all students in the graduating class.
The prize is endowed by funds donated to the department, and includes an honorary stipend. and is “awarded to the student who has completed major work in the field of mathematics with greatest distinction.”
Aiden intends to begin graduate school at Columbia University to work toward a master's degree in statistics.
Math Honor Society Welcomes New Members
F&M's Pennsylvania Eta Chapter of Pi Mu Epsilon (PME) national math honor society welcomed 20 new members during the 2020 spring semester.
Pi Mu Epsilon, a national mathematics honor society, promotes and recognizes mathematical scholarship among students in post-secondary institutions by electing members on an honorary basis according to their proficiency in mathematics and by engaging in activities designed to promote the mathematical and scholarly development of its members.
The following students were inducted: Jamie C. Belfer '22, Yining Chen '20, Davis L. Cook '21, Kaitlyn P. Cowan '20, Ziwei Ge '21, Brian V. Grimaldi '20, Liting Huang '21, Zecheng Huang '21, Cheyenne V. Hughes '21, Andrew D. Kaplan '21, Aiden P. Kenny '20, Zouxiaowei Ma '21, Alex Malave '21, Nataliia Nevinchana '21, Cesar F. Silva '21, Rafael S. Silva '21, Anh Q. Tran '22, Matthew C . Turetsky '21, Zhifan Zhang '21 and Kai Zong '20.
The traditional induction ceremony was not able to be held; however, in past years the ceremony hosted a math alumni speaker as a special guest, in conjuction with the Joint Math Colloquium, a collaborative effort between F&M and Millersville University math departments. Last year, Dr. Kerry Luse '07, the Clare Boothe Luce Associate Professor and Mathematics Chair at Trinity Washington University in Washington, DC, spoke to PME inductees and colloquium attendants.
Other past alumni speakers at the annual honor society induction have included: Kaitlin Leach '09, editor in mathematics and computer science with Cambridge University Press; Prof. Ben Levy '08, assistant math professor at Fitchburg State University; and Dr. Martina Mincheva '07, associate director of quantitative analytics and development at UBS Financial Services.
Student/Professor Serve at First Science Factory Math Day
Talks, Seminars & Competitions Take Shape
Joint Math Colloquium Series
F&M and our colleagues down the road at Millersville University jointly present a quasi-weekly mathematics colloquium talk series on Thursday afternoons during the academic year. All are welcome! Talks vary in their intended audiences: Some are moderately specialized and technical, while others are very student-friendly. The colloquiums are tentatively scheduled to resume for the fall 2020 semester.
Tetrahedral Geometry-Topology Seminar
Topologists, geometers, and other interested colleagues from F&M, Millersville University, Elizabethtown College, and Lebanon Valley College (the four vertices of our "tetrahedron") also co-sponsor a monthly geometry and topology research seminar series. We generally meet on the first Friday of each month at Hempfield High School (the approximate barycenter of our tetrahedron), in a math classroom festooned with inspirational Garfield posters. We then relax with a nice dinner out.
The Putnam Exam is a prestigious, challenging competitive mathematics exam administered annually on the first Saturday in December to students at colleges and universities across the US and Canada. Franklin & Marshall has made good showings in recent years, and we hope to continue the tradition this year.
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