Westminster College Mathematics Majors and Faculty Participated in Regional Conference

Thursday, March 21, 2013

NEW WILMINGTON, Pa. - Eleven Westminster College mathematics majors and their faculty advisers participated in the 15th annual regional student paper meeting Feb. 23 at Youngstown State University.
 
The conference, hosted by the Ohio XI Chapter of Pi Mu Epsilon mathematics honor society, gave undergraduate students the opportunity to present results of their projects and research and listen to presentations by other undergraduates from the region.
 
John Griebel, Morgan Swartz and Dominic Neely were advised by Dr. Carolyn Cuff, professor of mathematics.  Griebel presented "A Fibonacci Sequence with Probability," Swartz presented "Statistical Analysis of an Analytical Chemistry Experiment: Applications of Partial Least Squares Regression to Biodiesel Blends and Frackwater Samples" and Neely presented "Quarantine for an Infectious Disease."
 
Bethany Ekimoff presented "An Examination of Checkerboard Surfaces on Knots" and was advised by Dr. Jeffrey Boerner, assistant professor of mathematics.
 
Andrew Kieffer presented "Using a Markov Chain Model to Compare the 2012 MLB Playoff System to the 2011 System." He was advised by Boerner and Dr. David Offner, assistant professor of mathematics.
 
Offner also advised two additional student presenters: Christina Erceg presented "Backgammon End Game Doubling Strategies in Money Play and Match Play" and Lisa Kaylor presented "Matrices over Z (mod p) with Eigenvalues in the Same Field."
 
Daniel Rutkowski presented "An Exploration in Cover Pebbling." He was advised by Dr. Natacha Fontes-Merz, associate professor of mathematics and James Anthony, visiting lecturer of mathematics.
 
Emily Walther
presented "Variations of Lollipops and their Pebbling Numbers."  Her work was advised by Boerner, Fontes-Merz and Anthony.
 
Students Michael Girata and Brandon Mosely, and 2012 graduate Emily Dolsak, also attended the conference, but did not make presentations.
 
In addition to advisers listed above, additional Westminster faculty attending were Dr. Pamela Richardson, associate professor of mathematics, and Dr. Barbara Faires, professor emerita and secretary of the Mathematical Association of America. 
 
During this year's conference, Dr. Doug Faires was remembered for his dedication to undergraduates interested in mathematics. He organized the first conference and the promotion of regional undergraduate mathematics conferences until his passing in December 2012. Following the conference there was a memorial service at St. John's Episcopal Church, followed by a reception in his honor.
 
The conference was funded by the National Science Foundation's Mathematics Association of America Regional Mathematics Conferences (NSF-MAA RUMC) Grant Committee and the YSU Department of Mathematics and Statistics.
 
Contact Offner at (724) 946-7293 or email for additional information. 

About Westminster College...
Founded in 1852 and related to the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), Westminster College ranks first in the nation as "Best College for Women in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math," according to Forbes.com. Westminster is a top-tier liberal arts college and a national leader in graduation rate performance, according to U.S. News Best Colleges guide. Westminster is also honored as one of "The Best 377 Colleges" by The Princeton Review, and is named to the President's Honor Roll for excellence in service learning.

Nearly 1,600 undergraduate and graduate students benefit from individualized attention from dedicated faculty while choosing from 41 majors and nearly 100 organizations on the New Wilmington, Pa., campus. Visit www.westminster.edu/advantage to view "Advantage: Westminster" A Strategic Plan 2010-2020.

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Row 1 (l-r): Emily Dolsak '12, Bethany Ekimoff, Brandon Mosely and John Griebel. Row 2 (l-r): Dr. Carolyn Cuff, Morgan Swartz, Dr. Jeffrey Boerner, Lisa Kaylor and Emily Walther. Row 3 (l-r): Dr. David Offner, Michael Girarta, Dr. Pamela Richardson, Domenic Neely and Andrew Kieffer.