Graphing calculators, imaginary numbers, Pythagoras and 3.1415926535897932384626433832795028841971693993751058 will be the order of the day at Clayton State University on Friday, Mar. 9, and Saturday, Mar. 10, when, even though it’s four days before “Pi Day,” Clayton State will be the site of the Spring 2012 Mathematical Association of America (MAA) Southeastern Section Meeting.
Consisting of approximately 140, 15-minute talks in contributed paper sessions and special sessions, the 91st Annual MAA Southeastern Section meeting will take place during the University’s Spring Break. All of the talks will be about mathematics and mathematics education at the college level. To give an idea of the scope of the conference, it is anticipated that all classrooms and open space in the James M. Baker University Center, Clayton State’s largest academic building, will be in use for the expected 500 attendees, which will include mathematics faculty and students from Alabama, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee. There will also be some pre-conference activities on campus on Thursday afternoon and evening, Mar. 8.
According to Dr. Cathie Aust, Clayton State Emerita Professor of Mathematics and the conference’s local arrangements coordinator, the conference is open to the public, one does not have to be a member of the MAA to attend. However, anyone who attends must register. Go to the conference website; http://sections.maa.org/southeastern/maase/conference/, for more information, or to register.
“This is a big conference, and coordinating local arrangements is turning out to be a lot of work,” says Aust. “I would never survive it if there weren't so many dedicated people at Clayton State who have gone out of their way to help.”
In addition to using the Baker Center, the conference will also feature a music program for registered conference attendees in Clayton State’s world-famous Spivey Hall on Friday evening, involving performances by Clayton State music students, some of the University’s music faculty, and the Clayton State Gospel Choir. Drs. Kurt-Alexander Zeller and Michiko Otaki of the Clayton State music faculty are putting the music program together.
On Saturday morning, MAA Polya Lecturer Erik Demaine, professor of Computer Science at MIT, will be the conference’s invited speaker. Demaine will be speaking on “Algorithms Meet Art, Puzzles, and Magic” from 8:45 a.m. to 9:45 a.m. in the ballroom of the Clayton State Student Activities Center. More information is available about Demaine at in his Wikipedia article; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erik_Demaine.