Two planes are heading for the same destination 8000 miles away.
Plane A leaves at 1:00 pm, averaging 450 mph. Plane B leaves at 6:00 pm, averaging 400 mph. Which plane gets there first?
You’ve heard a problem like this before, but never outside a classroom. Because in the real world, it’s much less black and white.
That’s because life has invisible variables. For instance, it will depend on the accuracy of weather pattern predictions to account for delays. It will depend on assessments about the plane’s material parts and fuel efficiency. It will depend on the air traffic controllers issuing course corrections in real time. All these factors will contribute to when the planes will arrive.
So what’s the answer? The truth is that the answer is too small for the real question. The world depends on more than just calculations — it requires people who have the foresight and perspective necessary to keep the planes arriving on time.
The College of Science mathematics degree prepares students not only to solve for (x), but to see the whole equation.
Algebra: A vibrant, multi-faceted, and wide-ranging branch, having ties with almost every field of mathematics and computer science.
Analysis: Generally sharing a basis in calculus, analysis has played a crucial role in solving problems in physics and engineering.
Partial Differential Equations & Dynamical Systems
Combinatorics and Discrete Math: Perhaps the fastest growing area of modern mathematics. It has a wealth of real-world applications, especially in computer science, which have greatly contributed to its rapid growth.
The research of several other department members includes work on topics closely related to combinatorics:
- Maxim Braverman (polytopes and toric varieties)
- Anthony Iarrobino (combinatorial aspects of Hilbert schemes)
- Venkatraman Lakshmibai (Coxeter groups and the geometry of Schubert varieties)
- David Massey (hyperplane arrangements and singularities)
- Alexandru Suciu (combinatorics and topology of hyperplane arrangements)
- Jonathan Weitsman (problems involving analysis and combinatorics of convex polytopes)
Geometry: Concerned with the shape, size, and orientation of objects in space, and indeed such properties of space itself. The particular objects studied and the tools used in investigating their properties create subfields of geometry, such as algebraic geometry and differential geometry.
Singularities in Analytic Geometry
Develops problem-solving skills while simultaneously teaching mathematics concepts. Each unit centers on a particular applied problem, which serves to introduce the relevant mathematical topics.
Presents mathematical connections and foundations for art. Topics vary and may include aspects of linear perspective and vanishing points, symmetry and patterns, tilings and polygons, Platonic solids and polyhedra, golden ratio, non-Euclidean geometry, hyperbolic geometry, fractals, and other topics.
Traces the development of mathematics from its earliest beginning to the present. Emphasis is on the contributions of various cultures including the Babylonians, Egyptians, Mayans, Greeks, Indians, and Arabs.
Many math students choose to participate in the university’s signature co-operative education program because it offers excellent preparation and exposure to exciting careers. Here’s what our students are saying:
Ruo Yang, Consumer Analytics and Insights Co-op Program, Fidelity Investments
“I am currently doing a co-op with Fidelity Investments. It is an extraordinary experience to learn and apply mathematical skills into the real world rather than with academics only. The fantastic program (co-op in applied mathematics) is the way to transform the abstract mathematical knowledge to the different actual projects which increase the interests with math.”
Xiaofan Liu, Pension Analyst, Towers Watson
“The co-op experience made my MSOR program more colorful as well as is the stepping stone to my future career life.”
Hua Zhao, Sales Analyst, Gryphon Networks
“Co-op is the best way to gain real world experiences off campus! Also a great way to discover the industry and find your real interest before going to the real world.”
Liu Li, Data Modeling, Custom Portfolios
“I encountered new problems every day, learned new theories and practiced new models in every project. Working in industry is not the same thing as doing course projects at school. You have to learn things fast and keep pace with the development of new techniques.”
Shaokang Du, Data Scientist, Omni Claim
“In order to be a strong candidate for co-op I recommend preparing a challenging and skillful project experience if you don’t have much professional experience and keep an attitude and willingness to learn.”