On Saturday, Nov. 6, Drs. Chris Raridan and Elliot Krop of the Clayton State University Mathematics Department escorted six Clayton State students to the Sixth Annual University of North Carolina Greensboro Regional Mathematics and Statistics Conference.
The students attending the conference were Keli Sikes (Stockbridge), Brandi Luongo (Northgate High School, Newnan), Candace Swords (Stockbridge), Noah Ellis (Denton, Tex.), Tranisha Guthridge (Forest Park High School), and Jarvis Turner (Ellenwood).
Sikes, Luongo and Swords each gave 15 minute talks at the conference on their ongoing research. Luongo and Sikes are working with Krop on their Capstone projects in graph theory, with each providing new contributions in original research, making progress in previously open problems. Swords, who is a Dual Enrollment student at Clayton State and Stockbridge High School, has been working with Raridan on special topics in fractals. Their abstracts are available at http://www.uncg.edu/mat/rmsc/talks-abstracts.html.
All six students clearly both enjoyed the conference, and came away with an increased appreciation of mathematics.
"Each of our speakers gave excellent talks," says Raridan. "Keli won third place in the Undergraduate Presentations division and Candace won a special recognition award. Both awards come with an undisclosed monetary amount as well as award certificates."
I gave a talk on the edge-balance index sets of complete bipartite graphs," explains Sikes. "I had a lot of fun, and would love to attend another conference anytime. I had been going back and forth on whether or not to go to graduate school; however, after attending this conference, it has really inspired me to continue my mathematics career."
"If it were not for the funding through the Math Club, I would not have been able to experience this unique opportunity," says Swords. "It was, indeed, my first time away from home, but I would highly recommend this adventure to future students. Presenting at the conference benefitted me extraordinarily, and furthered my ability of understanding `complex' mathematics."
"I am so glad to have been given the opportunity to attend the North Carolina conference," says Luongo. "Not only did I learn a lot of interesting mathematics, but I also got an idea what pursuing a further degree in math could entail. I would most definitely be interested in conferences in the future."
"I enjoyed our trip to the UNCG math conference," says Guthridge. "I enjoyed meeting a few new people, but also getting to know my classmates better. I wouldn't mind going to another conference. Although I did not give a presentation, I would consider possibly giving one at a future conference."
"I enjoyed spending the weekend with like-minded students and educators with interests in math and science," say Ellis. "From the conference itself I benefitted mostly from seeing tangible examples of higher mathematics used in modern applied science research, as well the process some graduate students go through in order to present their work to others. In addition to this, I feel in a small way my mathematics education was advanced, particularly regarding the use of differential equations in physical research."
"I enjoyed the trip and the learning experience from the presentations at the convention," adds Turner. "Being around other math majors was quite inspiring and helped me appreciate math even more. The company whom I was with was nice and I wouldn’t mind going back again. I hope to go to another convention to learn more and have more appreciation of math."
The students' travel was funded entirely by the Clayton State Math Club. For more information about the Math Club and upcoming events, please visit the web site: http://studentorg.clayton.edu/mathclub/.