2016 NMU Mathematics & Computer Science Newsletter
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NMU Mathematics & Computer Science

2016 Department Newsletter

We have a lot of new changes in the Mathematics and Computer Science Department! Our new secretary, Katrina Keough began in October, Two babies are on the way; Kristi Poupore and her husband are expecting a second child in February as are Professor Daniel Rowe and his wife this August! The department also has a new meeting place for Math and Math Education Students!

As you may notice, this year the newsletter is electronic! We are attempting to stay "Green!"
Please "Subscribe" to our yearly newsletter while also opting in to receive news letter updates throughout the year!


 
Come and Visit Us!
2200 Jamrich Hall
Phone: 906.227.2020
Email: math_cs@nmu.edu
Assistant Professor Amy Barnsley promoted to Associate Professor. Congratulations Professor Barnsley!
 

A Word from 2016 College MATH Challenge, UP High School Math Challenge, and Programming Contests.


UP High School Math Challenge
This year, the 7th Upper Peninsula High School Math Challenge was held on Saturday, March 12 and was the second largest on record. Eight schools participated with a total of 37 teams. That's 146 students and countless volunteers!
As those of you who follow competitive mathematics are aware, the Challenge is a team competition with four players per team, and each school may send as many teams as it cares to. There are three rounds.
The highest individual scorers were:
1.  Ri Chen, Team: Team 2, Houghton Central High School, Houghton-Portage Township School District (Houghton Co, MI)
2.  Maggie Wang, Team: Team 2, Houghton Central High School, Houghton-Portage Township School District (Houghton Co, MI)
3.  Silas Tally, Team: We Needed Four, Ishpeming High School, Ishpeming Public School District No. 1 (Marquette Co, MI)
 
The highest team scores were:
 1.  Team: Team 2, Houghton Central High School, Houghton-Portage Township School District (Houghton Co, MI)
 2.  Team: Reach For The Pi, Escanaba Area Public High School, Escanaba Area Public Schools (Delta Co, MI)
 3.  Team: We Needed Four, Ishpeming High School, Ishpeming Public School District No. 1 (Marquette Co, MI)
 
As Houghton won, Houghton will display the traveling trophy for a year at which time they will have to compete for it again.
There was a tie for third place individual which ended with the Sudden Death Problem.

College MATH Challenge
Each fall, Alma College (Gratiot Co, MI) hosts the Michigan Autumn Take Home (MATH) Challenge.  Because NMU also hosts an event coincidentally called Math Challenge, we refer to the Alma competition as College Math Challenge and our own as High School Math Challenge. The NMU team earned a score of thirty-eight, well beating last year's score of three.  The median score was thirty-six, and ultimately NMU came in thirty-second out of sixty-nine teams.  The team that came in first was from Alma College.
 
The students on the team were Adam E. Kall, Michaela L. McLeod, and Matt E. Trefilek.
 
This year, Professor Daniel R. Rowe co-led the preparatory meetings.  He did such a good job, I think he gets to be head honcho next year.

Programming Contest

Seventy seven students on 29 teams representing four colleges and universities (as well as a secondary school group) competed in the 17th Annual NMU Invitational Programming Contest in April. We rank the event by teams and by schools. 
MTU had the first place team, but NMU had a very fine showing with second, third, and fourth.
MTU was the top-scoring school and NMU was a very close second.
Competing for NMU were, out of twenty-nine teams:
  • BELT LOOP:  Donald J. Barr, Nolan C. Earl, Colton M. Powell (Second Place) (Four problems correct)
  • THE AWESOMOS:  Brandon J. Kainulainen, Britney R. Reese (Third Place) (Two problems correct) 
  • THE WONDERFULS:  Kylee A. Branning, Alex T. Lanthier, Sanira Z Madzhikova (Fourth Place) (Two problems correct)
  • SEG FAULT:  Dallas A. Johnson, Nathan Z. Larson, Micaiah M. Parker (Twelfth Place (Eighteen-way tie))
Three of NMU's four teams placed in the top five of the competition.
 
Of the twenty-nine teams competing, four were from NMU, four were from LSSU, one was from Bay, one was from Copper Country...and nineteen were from MTU!!

Andrew A. (Andy) Poe, Ph.D., Professor
Mathematics and Computer Science Department College of Arts and Sciences Northern Michigan University (Marquette Co, MI) apoe@nmu.edu





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Mathematics Visiting Scholar

The Math & Computer Science Department would like to welcome visiting scholar, Dr. Xiaoqing Zeng from Changsha University of Science and Technology, China. He arrived in Marquette in March with his wife and 9 year old son. His areas of expertise include Big Dada Analysis, Data Mining and Optimization.

Have You Seen Our Student Spotlights of the Month?
Look in your inbox or visit our Announcement page for 2016-2017 monthly student spotlights!

Events To Look for in 2016-2017

Congratulations to the Elementary Education Math Club on earning Organization of the Year!
 

Molly Smith, President

Megan McCormick, Vice President

Emily Wright, Secretary

Taylor Wilber, Treasurer

Dr. Amy Barnsley, Faculty Adviser

2015-2016 Faculty Papers Published and Talks

Published/Submitted
1. Appleton, R., Thompson, J. and Menze, M. (student): Evaluating Several Different Web Prediction Algorithms, Proceeding of the 29th International Conference on Computers and Their Applications (CATA-2014). March 24-26, 2014. Los Vegas NV.

2. Bao, T.Q., Mordukhovich, B.S., Soubeyran, A.: Minimal points, variational principles, and variable preferences in set optimization. J. Nonlinear Convex Anal. 2015;16(8):1511-1537.

3. Bao, T.Q.: Vectorial Ekeland variational principles: a hybrid approach. Modelling, Computation and Optimization in Information Systems and Management Sciences. Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing 2015:359;513-525.

4. Bao, T.Q., Mordukhovich, B.S., Soubeyran, A.: Fixed points and variational principles with applications to capability theory of wellbeing via variational rationality. Set-Valued Var. Anal. 2015;23(2):375-398.

5. Bao, T.Q., Mordukhovich, B.S., Soubeyran, A.: Variational analysis in Psychological modeling. J. Optim. Theory Appl. 2015:164(1):290-315.

6. Bao, T.Q., Thera, M.: On extended versions of Dancs-Hegedus-Medvegyev’s fixed point theorem. Optimization. 2015. DOI:10.1080/02331934.2015.1113533.

7. Bao, T.Q., Eichfelder, G., Soleimani, B., Tammer, Chr.: Ekeland’s variational principle for vector optimization with variable ordering structure. J. Convex Anal. 2017;24(1):1-10.

8. Bell, C.: Integrating Math Project. Paper accepted for inclusion in an online collection of NCTM articles.

9. Cherry, A. (student), Olejniczak, D. (student) and Zhang, Q.: Counting the number of round-robin tournament schedules. Elem. Math. 71(1):21-38, 2016.

10. Buhl, D., Thompson, J. and Wheeler, S. (student): iMath: Digital Images Modeled with Matrices. International Research in Education journal, 3(1), 2015.

11. Kortanek, K.O., and Zhang, Q.: Extending the mixed algebraic-analysis Fourier-Motzkin elimination method for classifying linear semi-infinite programmes. Optimization 65(4): 707-727, 2016.

12. Kowalczyk, M.: Holant problems for 3-regular graphs with complex edge functions. Theory
of Computing Systems, Accepted, 2015.

13. Phillips, J.D., Pushkashu, D.I., Shcherbacov, A.V. and Shcherbacov, V.A.: On Birkhoff's
quasigroup axioms. Journal of Algebra, 457: 7-17, 2016

14. Rowe, D.: Lusztig Slices in the Affine Grassmannian and Nilpotent Matrices, PhD Thesis,
University of Toronto Thesis Archives, August 2015.

15. Thompson, J.: Computing Geographical Distances. Mathematical Spectrum, 48(3), 2016.

16. Zhang, Q.: The orthogonal complement of faces for cones associated with the cone of
positive semidefinite matrices. Advances in global optimization, 15-22, Springer Proc. Math.
Stat., 95, Springer, 2015.

Presented/Attended
1. Appleton, R.: Linux at the University, Linux.conf.au 2015, Auckland, New Zealand, 12 –
16 January 2015.

2. Barnsley, A.: Analysis of Placement into Developmental Mathematics, American
Mathematical Association of Two Year Colleges 41st Annual Conference, November 18 -
November 22, 2015

3. Barnsley, A. and Rowe, D.: Factoring! A New Method for Factoring Cubics, NMU
Mathematics and Computer Science Colloquium, April 2016.

4. Buhl, D. and Morey, S. (student): “Cold Hard Fractals: Mandelbrot Sets and Lake Superior
Ice Formations.” Science on Tap series, Ore Dock Brewing Company, March 2015.

5. Bell, C.: Presentation at Fall Conference for Educators, 2015.

6. Bell, C.: Workshops/Presentations – 4, Math Teachers' Circle, 2015.

7. Bell, C.: Proposal accepted for presentation at Michigan Council of Teachers of Mathematics
annual conference in July 2016.

8. Phillips, J.D.: Commutant Elements in Bol Loops. Loops '15, Ohrid, Macedonia, 1 July
2015. (Also on organizing committee)

9. Phillips, J.D.: A Few Hard Problems From Loop Theory … But Not For The Computer!
Mathematics Department Colloquium, Sao Paulo, Brazil, 27 July 2015. (Funded by FIPSE
grant)

10. Phillips, J.D.: Commutant Elements in Bol Loops, AMS sectional meeting, Loyola University, Chicago, 4 October 2015. (Also on organizing committee)

11. Rowe, D.: Conjugacy, Polynomials, and Lattices. NMU Mathematics and Computer Science Colloquium, November 2015.

12. Rowe, D.: Lattices and Characteristic Polynomials, Regional MAA Conference, Lake Superior State University, October 2015.

13. Rowe, D.: Math Memes: The Geometry of Formulas Makes Math Go Viral, Science on Tap series, Ore Dock Brewery Company, January 2016. NMU Mathematics and Computer Science Colloquium, February 2016.

14. Thompson, J.: Contemplative Pedagogies in Mathematics. Joint Meetings of the MAA/AMS (JMM16) in Seattle, WA, January 2016.

15. Thompson, J. attended a regional conference, the UPMAA at Lake State University, October, 2015.

16. Truong, B.: A blended proof of a vectorial Ekeland variational principle. AMS/Midwest Optimization Meeting, Chicago, Illinois, October 2 - 4, 2015.

17. Truong, B.: Variational principles and applications. Colloquium at Institute of Mathematics, Martin-Luther University of Halle-Wittenberg, Germany, May 19, 2015.

18. Truong, B.: Vectorial Ekeland variational principles: A hybrid approach. Modelling, Computation and Optimization in Information Systems and Management Sciences, Metz, France, May 11 - 13, 2015.

19. Truong, B.: Fixed points and variational principles with applications to behavioral sciences. AMS National Mathematics Meeting, San Antonio, Texas, January 10 - 13, 2015.

20. Zhang, Q.: Extending the Mixed Algebraic-Analysis Fourier-Motzkin Method for Classifying Linear Semi-infinite Programs. The International Congress on Industrial and Applied Mathematics (ICIAM), Beijing, China, August 10-14, 2015.

The weekly Colloquium and Seminar Series for the 2015-2016 school year came to a close in April after hosting presentations by undergraduate students, faculty, and outside speakers. The committee also hosted a reception for our “outstanding” students as well as the students who participated in the Celebration of Student Research.

Grant/Funding
1. Bell, C. applied for and received Supplemental Gateway Course Support for MA104 in the fall ($3000 to support two TAs)

2. Bell, C. applied for one grant (Instructional Improvement Grant - NMU, decision pending)

3. Bell, C. applied for an ICME-13 Travel Grant to attend the International Conference on Mathematics Education in Hamburg, Germany (not funded)

4. Barnsley, A. received $3000 Internal NMU curriculum development grant for the proposal titled “Developed MA100 curriculum for online teaching”. Implemented course Fall 2015.

5. Buhl, D. coordinated efforts and funding to transport students to the Minnesota Council of Teachers of Mathematics Meeting in Duluth, MN, May 2015.

6. Buhl, D. coordinated efforts and funding to transport students to the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics Regional Meeting in Minneapolis, November 2015.

7. Thompson, J. and Rowe, D. organized and took three NMU undergraduates (Carter Murray, Anthony Webb, and Travis Wheeler) to the Regional MAA Conference for them to present research projects, Lake Superior State University, October 2015.

8. Truong, B.: Research Summer in France and Germany, College of Art and Science Special Project, NMU. Amount: $ 2,500, May 9 - June 16, 2015.

9. Truong, B.: GREQAM-AMSE research grant, Aix-Marseille University. Amount €5,000, May 25 - June 16, 2015.

10. Truong, B. wrote a proposal entitled “Fixed points and variational principles with applications to behavior science” and applied to Simon Foundation for a five-year grants to mathematicians to support collaboration and travel. (A collaboration grant will provide $7,000 per year for five years; this includes $5,000 per year for collaboration, travel and research expenses, $1,000 per year in discretionary funds for the awardee’s department, and $1,000 per year in indirect costs to the awardee’s institution.) (not funded)

Research Visits:
1. Truong, B. visited Aix-Marseille School of Economics, Aix-Marseille University, FRANCE and worked with Prof. Antoine Soubeyran from May 25 to June 16, 2015.

2. Truong, B. visited the Faculty of Natural Sciences III, Martin-Luther-University Halle-Wittenberg, Institute of Mathematics, Halle, GERMANY and worked with Prof. Christiane Tammer from May 15 to 25, 2015.

3. Professor Goulin Yu, who works at the College of Mathematics and Information Science, Beifang University of Nationalities, Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, China, visited and conducted research at the department of Mathematics and Computer Science during the
Winter 2015 semester, under a China government-sponsored visiting scholar/postdoctoral research program. Faculty host: B. Truong.

Students
1. Buhl, D., Thompson, J. and Wheeler, S.: iMath: Digital Images Modeled with Matrices. International Research in Education journal, 3(1), 2015.

2. Appleton, R., Thompson, J. and Menze, M.: Evaluating Several Different Web Prediction Algorithms, Proceeding of the 29th International Conference on Computers and Their Applications (CATA-2014). March 24-26, 2014. Los Vegas NV.

3. Murray, C., Wheeler, T. and Paulson, J.: Mobius Transformations. NMU Math Colloquium, September 2015. UPMAA Conference in Sault Ste. Marie, October 2015. Joint Meetings of the MAA/AMS (JMM16) in Seattle, WA, January 2016. NMU’s Celebration of Student Research (Poster), April, 2016. Undergraduate research project as part of an Independent Study. Faculty mentor: Thompson, J.

4. Cherry, A., Olejniczak, D. and Zhang, Q.: Counting the number of round-robin tournament schedules. Elem. Math. 71(1):21-38, 2016. Faculty mentor: Zhang, Q.

5. Buhl, D. and Morey, S.: “Cold Hard Fractals: Mandelbrot Sets and Lake Superior Ice Formations.” Science on Tap series, Ore Dock Brewing Company, March 2015. Faculty mentor: Buhl, D.

6. Daley, M-P. has been working with a team of students to design and assess the effectiveness of an effort to educate NMU students about what materials should and should not be placed in NMU's recycling bins. She has used CS410 to help her design the data entry form her team used to record several hundred survey results. She used Microsoft Access to design a form that validates the data as it is entered. The form also cleverly minimizes keystrokes, thereby speeding data entry. These have been key points in the class. CS410 instructor: Lawton, R.

7. An NMU team of three students earned a score of thirty-eight, well beating last year's score of three, at the Michigan Autumn Math Challenge in November 2015. The median score was thirty-six, and ultimately NMU came in thirty-second out of sixty-nine teams. Their performance increased from scoring a 3/100 last year to scoring 47/100 this year (which put them ahead of half of the other teams competing). Faculty mentors: Poe, A. and Rowe, D.

8. PROGCONT: Seventeenth Annual Programming Contest is a success. MTU had the first place team, but NMU had a very fine showing with second, third, and fourth. MTU was the top-scoring school and NMU was a very close second. Three of NMU's four teams placed in the top five of the competition. The event was sponsored by the student chapter of the Association for Computing Machinery (Nolan C. Earl, President; Andrew A. Poe, Advisor). The primary coordinator of the event: Poe, A.


Emeritus Faculty Don Faust
  • With co-author Dr. Judith Puncochar of the School of Education, Leadership, and Public Service (SELPS) at Northern in a recent special issue of the journal of the International Society for Universal Discourse (ISUD) on “current problems in applied epistemology”
Emeritus Faculty John Kiltunen
  • January 30th 2016, Finnish Consul General Jukka Pietikainen bestowed honor of First Class of the Order of the Lion to John, and the Cross of Merit of the Order of the White Rose to Pauline.
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