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Summer Student Research

June 9, 2011

Several mathematics majors are participating in off campus mathematics programs for the summer of 2011.

Brittany Baker ’11: Selected to participate in the competitive program for Women and Mathematics at the Institute for Advanced Studies at Princeton University from May 16-27, 2011, followed by the competitive Bridge Program at Texas A & M University from Jun. 26-Jul. 30, 2011. The former intensive 11-day mentoring program for undergraduate and graduate women in mathematics brings together research mathematicians and students to address issues of gender imbalance in mathematics and includes lectures/seminars on mathematical topics and discussions on peer relations and career opportunities. The latter program is intended for 15 students entering graduate school in mathematics in the fall to supplement their knowledge to be better prepared for first year graduate work.

Jaqui Tuthill ’12:  Selected to participate in the competitive statistics REU program at Claremont Colleges in California from Jun. 6-Jul. 29, 2011. At this REU, 10 students are funded to work with three faculty members from Claremont McKenna, Harvey Mudd and Pomona Colleges for the eight week clinic. Students work on an exciting research project in mathematics, participate in workshops to inform them about mathematical science careers, and are encouraged to present their findings at a mathematical or statistical professional society meeting.

 Jason DeCoteau ’12:  Selected to participate in on-campus research during the summer of 2011 with Prof. Patrick Walsh of the Economics Department funding by the Social Science Research Center (SSRC). He is researching per capita Medicare expenditures and trying to find any patterns in why some areas spend more per person than other areas. He is considering both the demographics of these areas and also how the Medicare expenditures are being spent to see if certain demographics can explain some of the variation, such as if an area with a high poverty rate spends more per person on Medicare. Then he is also looking at how the Medicare benefits are being disbursed to see how an area that spends a large amount on Medicare expenditures per capita spends their money, such as on outpatient services, inpatient services, or on laboratory services, etc. Thus, does an area that spends a large amount per person allot a significant percentage of per capita Medicare benefits on outpatient services, or some other type of service, and can the way an area disburses Medicare benefits explain any of the variation in spending? He is focusing on the areas that spend the most, and the least amount of per capita Medicare expenditures, in order to see if he can learn anything about the differences between high and low spending areas, and hopefully determine a pattern that suggests a way to be a low spending area.

Katie Heath ’14: Selected to participate in the competitive summer mathematics pre-REU program on “Signal and Image Analysis” at Texas A & M University during Jun. 26-Jul. 30, 2011.  As technology becomes more sophisticated, the need for efficiently handling vast amounts of data has grown tremendously. This pre-REU program will introduce the basic ideas behind Fourier analysis and wavelets, the two main tools used to analyze signals and images. As time goes on, the students will break up into groups and work on projects involving real-world examples.

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