Saint Mary's College of California

Math & Physics Club

Upcoming Activities

Pi Day 2016

The mathematician’s favorite day of the year lands on a Monday this year! To celebrate the our favorite transcendental number, the Math and Physics Club will be organizing many pi-themed festivities. Keep an eye out for more announcements…

Problem of the Week

It’s back! Put your problem-solving hat on and get ready to compete against other majors for prizes (to be announced). The first POTW can be found here.

Recent Activities

Spring 2016 Organizational Meeting (2/17/16)

Several math majors met up to discuss the club’s plans for the upcoming semester and enjoy snacks. Of particular interest: Pi Day and next year’s leadership…

Info Session — Summer Research & Internships (11/11/15)

Whether they were interested in finding a summer math program or just hungry for free pizza, about 20 math majors and minors gathered to hear Sofia Burille and Erica Musgrave describe their experiences last summer and to learn more about available opportunities. Meeting notes

Fall 2015 Organizational Meeting (9/16/15)

Math and Physics majors met up to share ideas for club activities and enjoy pizza and drinks!

Info Session — Graduate School (9/8/15)

Representatives from the Math & CS and Physics departments met with students to talk about applying to graduate programs. Students interested in handouts from the session should contact Profs. Beck or Conner (Math) or Prof. Kintner (Physics).

Club Meeting (11/12/14)

Expertly avoiding their actual homework assignments, club members Colin Buxton, Art Garcia, Alex Lowen, Erica Musgrave, and Elijah Soria worked together to solve Moser’s circle problem. The problem asks for a general formula describing the maximum number of regions into which the interior of a circle can be divided by a complete graph on n vertices if the vertices are placed on the circumference of the circle. The problem is famous in part because for n = 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, the┬ámaximum number of regions is 1, 2, 4, 8, 16, respectively, leading to the natural – but incorrect – guess that the general formula is 2n.┬áThe students not only found a correct general formula, but also nicely decorated the board in Galileo 116.

IMG_20141112_164407575_HDR

The formula scrawled somewhat legibly in yellow near the center of the board reads:

n + \sum_{k=1}^{n-2} \sum_{i=1}^{n-k-1} ki-(k-1)

 

What’s New

The Math & CS Department is seeking applications for the Brother Dominic Barry Math Scholarships, which will be awarded to incoming freshmen in 2016! For information, go to Activities » Math Scholarship Competition.

Math in the Media

The United States has won the Math Olympiad for the first time in 21 years!

Quanta Magazing highlights a new result of Princeton mathematician Maria Chudnovsky regarding the coloring of perfect graphs.