The Department of Mathematics and Computer Science at Albion College needs your support to fulfill our mission and see new initiatives become a reality. You can make a difference!
There are many reasons to support the Mathematics and Computer Science Department of Albion College. Private contributions augment every aspect of the college, from attracting students to retaining faculty and staff. Your financial support demonstrates your personal commitment to our programs and mission. Your support reaffirms your belief in the role Albion has played in your success. Your monetary contributions help make an Albion education available to many financial needy students. Your tax deductible gifts improve our position in college and university rankings.
Our Departmental Mission
Through excellence in teaching and advising, our dedicated faculty prepare students in mathematics and computer science for meaningful careers, advanced study, and a passion for learning. Individual attention, small classes, departmental activities, and a state-of-the-art facility foster a vibrant scholarly community. Distinguished faculty, active as peer-reviewed scholars, provide students with innovative teaching and quality research opportunities. Our modern curriculum emphasizes modeling, problem solving, logic, quantitative skills, critical thinking, abstraction, and rigor. Regular dialog with other disciplines shapes relevant courses for all students, regardless of major. Interdisciplinary connections and applications are emphasized in our courses and in the rich liberal arts tradition of Albion College.
Specific Areas of Need
We have many areas of where your contribution will strengthen our mission. What follows is a list of specific areas where you can help the Mathematics and Computer Science Department help the next generation of mathematicians and computer scientists! Please consider supporting the department in one or more of the following ways.
Do you know any high school students interested in mathematics or computer science? Please encourage them to consider Albion College!
Do you know of any special internship opportunities for students majoring in mathematics or computer science? If so, please let us know so we can help make connections with our current students. These early career explorations can have a profound impact in their lives.
Do you know of any career opportunities for students majoring in mathematics or computer science? If so, please let us know so we can assist our current students in their quest for meaningful employment.
Annual Fund gifts underwrite the daily operating expenses of the College: faculty salaries and teaching materials, computers and laboratory equipment, library acquisitions, physical plant maintenance, and much more. Generally, Albion College asks that donors give first to the Annual Fund and that all other gifts be made over and above that annual support.
Science Complex Renovation
The science complex, home of Mathematics, Computer Science, Physics, Geology, Chemistry, and Biology, completed an extensive renovation and expansion in 2006. The project would not have been possible without your financial support. This complex houses faculty offices and state-of-the-art spaces for mathematics and computer science education and research. Improvements are designed to encourage greater collaboration among all of the science disciplines and the promotion of science to the entire Albion community. This facility demonstrates Albion's commitment to environmentally friendly (green) design, as certified by the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) organization, and will serve as a model in this regard for other small colleges. Please come by and tour this remarkable facility the next time you visit Albion!
Your contributions, regardless of size, are very important to the success of our department. Our departmental gift fund supports many of the following activities and we are thankful for any and all contributions we receive. Be sure to indicate Math/CS Department in the memo line.
We welcome in-kind donations including modern office equipment, books, computing artifacts, teaching tools, and artwork. We are also interested in working with the College archivist in collecting historical artifacts related to mathematics and computer science at Albion.
The generosity of Albion alumni and friends that helps fund the fine tradition of teaching excellent students. Support from donors allows the college to keep tuition at a competitive level, allowing more students the opportunity of an Albion education. This is of particular importance because of the increased number of students now attending Albion.
Departmental scholarships are awarded to incoming and current students on the recommendation of the department faculty. We currently have four named scholarships we award to students with a talent in mathematics and/or computer science:
We encourage you to contribute to one of these existing funds or establish a new endowed scholarship.
Outstanding Student Awards
The Ronald C. Fryxell Award in Computer Science was established in 2002 by faculty, staff, students, and alumni to honor of Professor Emeritus Ronald C. Fryxell. In his 38 years of service, he taught nearly every departmental course and was instrumental in developing many computer science courses at Albion College. The award is given to a graduating student who demonstrates an excellence in computer science and service to the department. We would like to see sufficient funds to have this become an endowed prize. Contributions to this fund are a great way to recognize the many contributions Dr. Fryxell made to Albion College.
We would also would like to see endowed prizes and/or scholarships awarded to recognize the efforts of outstanding sophomores and juniors.
Our weekly colloquium series is a forum where exciting speakers talk about mathematics and computer science. Recent topics include industrial mathematics, microbubbles, topology, games, mathematical applications in economics, linear algebra, number theory, geometry, materials science, graph theory, mathematical modeling, cryptography, genetic algorithms, computer vision, medical imaging, software engineering, logic, electronic textbooks, bioinformatics, data visualization, student summer research experiences, graduate school, and careers options. This is a great opportunity for students to learn about interesting aspects of mathematics and computer science not normally taught in our courses.
We invite any alumni interested in talking about how they use mathematics and science in their career to come give a talk. If you are a professor at another institution, we invite you to talk about a research topic accessible to undergraduates. If you are employed in business or government, we invite you to talk some of the technical aspects of your job and how your studies at Albion prepared your career. Current graduate students are invited to talk about their research, provide any information about their current institution, and give tips for success. Contact David A. Reimann if you would like to participate in this program.
We also seek funds allowing us to bring in speakers from other institutions. The cost of bringing a speaker from outside Michigan may cost $1,000 or more. Speakers also require additional funds to cover their time.
The colloquium series has become a community-building event, with many of our majors attending. By exposure to new and exciting topics, we hope to encourage students in their studies, help them identify career options, and give them ideas on possible research topics to explore in an undergraduate honors thesis or in graduate school.
Professional Society Memberships for Students
We would like to provide all of our Junior and Senior majors with professional society memberships. For mathematics majors, we would like to sponsor their membership in the Mathematics Association of America (MAA) ($25 per student) or the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM) ($23 per student). For computer science majors, we would like to sponsor their membership in the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) ($20 per student). We feel membership in these organizations will help students become part of their professional communities. We also sponsor students in Kappa Mu Epsilon, a specialized honor society in Mathematics promoting the interest of mathematics among undergraduate students. We would like to start a chapter of Upsilon Pi Epsilon, a specialized honor society in Computer Science.
Student Travel to Meetings and Events
One of the most memorable activities for students is travel to meetings and events with other students and faculty. In recent years we have taken students to conferences to present their research, mathematics competitions, programming competitions, and professional meetings. Support for registration fees, transportation, meals, and lodging are all important to make these experiences a reality.
Quantitative Studies Center
The Quantitative Studies Center offers support (free of charge) to all Albion College students. Students can come for help with any kind of math (at any level), statistics, logic, using spreadsheets, graphing calculators, computer algebra systems (like Mathematica or MathCad), test or math anxiety, graduate exam preparation, studying math and science, test-taking strategies, and anything else involving quantitative skills.
Financial support is needed to compensate student tutors and provide resources to help struggling students learn mathematics.
Many of our course rely heavily on computers and specialized software. Students have access to and routinely use about 50 computers in and around the department. It is important to our curriculum that hardware is kept current and we maintain up-to-date software. Your contributions can help defray these costs.
We see a strong library as a key resource for advanced scholarship and research by students and faculty. In the last decade, there has been a significant increase in the price for journal subscriptions. Publishers often allow a discounted price for groups of journals and are now offering on-line subscriptions. However, some journal subscriptions still cost $500 or more per year. Your support can provide continued access to quality academic journals and to broaden the range of resources available.
Undergraduate Research Funds
Research is the ultimate in learning by doing. It involves asking the right questions, mastering research methods and tools, thinking independently and creatively, and communicating results in ways that are meaningful to others. To promote this process of discovery, Albion College has established the Foundation for Undergraduate Research, Scholarship, and Creative Activity (FURSCA). FURSCA does just what its name implies: it supports student research, original scholarship, and creative efforts, making possible sustained projects that go well beyond the scope of regular course work. FURSCA's programs are open to students from any academic major, and are available throughout a student's four years at Albion. Grants to qualified students underwrite summer stipends and the purchase of equipment and supplies. FURSCA also encourages faculty, as they plan new courses or revise existing ones, to incorporate research strategies into the teaching and learning process. In advocating diverse approaches to research and scholarship, the Foundation will create a mind-set for lifelong inquiry among Albion graduates. See the supporting FURSCA page for more information on supporting undergraduate scholarship and creative activity.
Resources for Faculty Research and Professional Development
Faculty resources help maintain an active scholarly presence and to stay abreast of new developments. We seek funds to support faculty membership in professional organizations, defray costs to attend professional meetings and workshops, and to support resources (specialized hardware and/or software) required for research. Professional faculty growth helps provide a rich learning environment for all students.
Endowed Professorships were established at Albion to provide enhanced teaching and scholarship support for outstanding faculty members. Endowed Professorships have special value within Albion College. They are a way of recognizing and fostering faculty excellence by allowing faculty to demonstrate commitment to quality instruction and scholarly accomplishment. Since these Professorships were established to support outstanding faculty members and, in part, recognize individuals for quality instruction and scholarly accomplishment, a record of sustained and continuing excellence in both teaching and scholarship must be demonstrated. Resources provided allow faculty to engage in significant professional development which further enhances their productivity and also enhances the reputation of Albion College. The awards includes funds to be used for scholarly and/or teaching needs such as travel for research, books, student assistance, summer study opportunities and materials/supplies. The term of each professorships is four years.
The Office of Institutional Advancement develops professorships by matching needs in departments or divisions with the interests of donors. The President, upon recommendations from the Chief Academic Officer and the Faculty Personnel Committee, then makes his or her recommendations to the Board of Trustees, which appoints all holders of Endowed Professorships.
We sincerely appreciate your interest in helping improve the Mathematics and Computer Science department. Your contributions, regardless of size, make a difference in the lives of current and future students. See the Giving section of the Albion website for more details and information about supporting Albion College, or contact David A. Reimann for more information about our mission, programs, faculty, and students.
Thank you for your continued and generous support!