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Math Events

Math External EventsSimon’s Rock students and faculty after attending a fun day of talks at St. Michael’s College.

Invited Speakers

In addition to occasional math talks by students and faculty, we invite speakers to come to campus and talk about the sort of mathematics they are interested in. Recent outside speakers include:

  • Mark Brittenham (UN Lincoln) “Solving sudoku games with mathematics” (October 2019)
  • Kaethe Minden (SR) “Infinite Latin Squares” (October 2020)
  • Ethan Ackelsberg (OSU) (SR B.A. 2016) “From the Pigeonhole Principle to Ergodic Ramsey Theory” (November 2020)
  • Melissa Sherman-Bennett (UC Berkeley) (SR B.A. 2016) “Shallow Water Waves and Triangulations of Polygons” (February 2021)
  • Candice Price (Smith College) “Unravelling Biochemistry Mysteries: Knot Theory Applied to Biochemistry” (March 2021)
  • Felipe Ramirez (Wesleyan University) “The dynamics of numbers” (October 2021)
  • Miha Habič (SR) “Hiding information in generic sequences” (November 2021)
  • Nancy Scherich (ICERM) “Dancing with Braids” (December 2021)
  • Emma Hasson & Yolanda Zhu (SR) “Infinite Latin Squares” (February 2022)
  • Add “Chassidy Bozeman (Mt. Holyoke College) “Maximum nullity, zero forcing, and power domination” (March 2022)
  • Angela Robinson (NIST) “The integer factorization and discrete logarithm problems” (April 2022)
  • Joy Wang (Union College) “Climate Modeling and Projection” (May 2022)
  • Gilbert Strang (MIT) “Singular Values of Matrices and Data Science” (November 2016)
  • Erica Graham (Bryn Mawr) “The Complex World of Diabetes…with Mathematics” (February 2016)
  • Johanna Franklin (Hofstra) “An Introduction to Randomness” (November 2015)
  • Sam Ferguson (NYU) (SR B.A. 2006) “Cards, Buses, and Random Matrices” (October 2015)
  • Miles Wheeler (NYU) “Fun with Game Theory” (October 2015)
  • David Lowry (Brown) “When is the Mean Value Theorem Continuous, and Related Tales” (May 2015)
  • Henry Cohn (Microsoft Research) “How to Correct Your Errors Without Knowing What They Are” (April 2015)
  • Diana Davis (Northwestern) “Geodesic Paths and Cutting Sequences on Polygon Surfaces” (September 2014)
  • Ilesanmi Adeboye (Wesleyan) “An Introduction to Hyperbolic Geometry” (February 2013)
  • Lee Mosher (Rutgers-Newark) “Graphs and groups” (February 2012)
  • Robert Young (NYU) (SR B.A. 2002) “i is an imaginary number. Aren’t they all?” (November 2010)
  • Lauren Rose (Bard College) “The Platonic solids and their groups” (April 2010)
  • Ben Webster (IAS) (SR B.A. 2002) “Why are the Platonic solids so special?” (April 2008)

Each year, the Math Club organizes several trips to conferences and talks by outside speakers. In this way, we get to participate in the broader mathematics community.


WIMIN at Smith

Each fall, Smith hosts a one-day undergraduate conference entitled Women In Math in New England (WIMIN). Many talks are by female undergraduates, graduate students, and faculty, but anyone, regardless of gender, is welcome to attend. Simon’s Rock students have presented at this conference in the past. The conference usually includes a panel on attending graduate school.

SUMS at Brown

The Symposium for Undergraduates in the Mathematical Sciences (SUMS) is hosted by the Brown University Math and Applied Math Departments. There are several short talks by undergraduate students, and four plenary talks by faculty members. In some years, there has also been a poster session. SUMS usually falls near Simon’s Rock's spring break.

Hudson River Undergraduate Math Conference

Every April, the Hudson River Undergraduate Math Conference (HRUMC) meets somewhere in the upper Hudson River valley region. We usually attend and often send student (and faculty) speakers. The conference has many concurrent sessions with talks by students and faculty, along with a keynote address.

Putnam Exam

The annual Putnam mathematical competition for undergraduates is held on the first Saturday of December. More than 4000 students from over 500 colleges and universities in the U.S. and Canada take part in the competition. It is the most prestigious college-level mathematics examination in the world. The test consists of 12 mathematics problems worth ten points each. The test is six hours long and held in two sittings.

In the fall, Math club focuses on problem-solving to prepare for the exam. One year, Simon’s Rock’s team finished in 13th place!