April 1, 2010 Department Acquires π
Following in the footsteps of the Museum of Modern Art's Department of Architecture and Design in its acquisition of the @ symbol, Albion's Mathematics and Computer Science Department has acquired the Greek letter Pi into its collection of mathematical artifacts. "The acquisition is momentous," exclaimed a clearly elated emeritus professor Robert Messer. "We are all very proud of the acquisition," says chair Mark Bollman. The formal acquisition will hopefully raise the stature and prevalance of this important symbol. Many calculators contain a special key for pi, yet most modern keyboards in the United States do not. "I am ready for a Pi on my keyboard," says professor David Reimann.
April 6, 2010 Kathryn Wagner Completes Honors Thesis
Senior Kathryn Wagner has successfully completed her honors thesis, "Trigonometric Functions in the Biangular Plane" and will graduate with Albion College honors. Her work looks at analytic geometry in a coordinate system where two angles are used to denote points in two dimensions. Albion College honors are awarded to students in the Prentiss R. Brown Honors Institute who complete the four Great Issues Seminar courses, maintain a 3.5 overall GPA, and complete a major thesis project. Kathryn's research was supported last summer by a FURSCA grant, and her thesis was supervised by Professor Mark Bollman. Professors Nadiya Fink and Darren Mason also served on the committee evaluating her work.
April 10, 2010 - Five Students Compete For Albion In Lower Michigan Mathematics Competition
On Saturday, April 10, 5 Albion students joined mathematics students from 12 other Michigan colleges at the 34th Lower Michigan Mathematics Competition, held at Grand Valley State University. Representing Albion in the LMMC were Chen Chen, Yang Chen, Sining Gu, Qian Wang, and Mingjia Yang. In the LMMC, teams of 2 or 3 students face off in a 10-question, 3-hour exam covering a variety of undergraduate mathematics topics. Calvin College is the defending LMMC champion; Albion teams won the contest in 2004 and 2007. The 2010 LMMC exam was written by Richard Gibbs of Fort Lewis College. Mark Bollman advised the two Albion entries. Results of the competition are expected by the end of the academic year. The 2011 LMMC will be hosted by Kalamazoo College.
April 16, 2010 - David Reimann has grant funded
Professor David Reimann received notice that his grant proposal entitled "Developing an Framework for Algorithmically Constructing Tilings of the Plane" was funded. This grant will allow funding for a student to work during the summer of 2010 with Dr. Reimann on a project investigating the patterns and structures obtainable from random tessellations of segmenting simple tiles. The grant is funded through the College's faculty development fund. The faculty development fund was initiated by a grant from the William and Flora Hewlett and Andrew W. Mellon Foundations having the stated purpose "to support self-renewal, the process by which a college reconstitutes its freshness and effectiveness."