A big thank you to all participants in the Math Awareness Month Contest. Of all the contest entries with correct answers, two students and two staff members were randomly drawn to win a prize. The student winners are Elise Dornbush and Justin Rackham. The staff winners are Linda Blanford and Dorothy Paradis. A special thank you to Jenn Rockafellow and the GRCC Bookstore for donating contest prizes!

## Posted tagged ‘Mathematics’

### Winners to Math Awareness Month Contest

April 21, 2017### Mechanical and Architectural Department collaborate using the Maker Lab

April 19, 2017With the implementation of the new Maker Lab, the Mechanical/Architectural Design department collaborated on some projects across the college this semester. Using the technology in the lab, we were able to have some conversations with other departments on how we could join together, centered around student learning. Three projects that came out of this were working with Scott Garrard from the Visual Arts Department, Chef Gilles Renusson from the Secchia Institute for Culinary Education and John Dersch from the Math Department.

Working with Scott, the students were able to cut their chairs on the laser out of cardboard to make a prototype of their idea. Chef Gilles brought in both chocolate and sugar to be etched for their state competition coming up at the state capital this month. John brought their calculus equations to us and we brought them into our 3D CAD software and then were able to 3D print them.

Overall, it has been a great year and we look forward to more amazing ways to use the lab.

### Students to present two Mathematics Seminars

April 18, 2017The Grand Rapids Community College Mathematics Department is pleased to announce that it will host presentations by two current students at its final Mathematics Seminars of academic year 2016-2017.

The first seminar features José Garcia, who will discuss “The Origins of Numbers” on Tuesday, April 18, 3-4 p.m. in 103 Cook. This talk should appeal to those with an interest in mathematics, mathematics education and history. Jose’s abstract follows.

**The Origins of Numbers**

*Every time we wonder if there is enough money to buy that new iPad AND groceries, numbers are used. We take for granted what it means to do basic arithmetic and, even more so, why the numbers came to be the way they are. Come join us in looking into the origins of numbers and why they look the way they do today!*

Our second talk will be given by Jeff Powers. His topic, “The Open Gate of Mathematics: From the Alhambra to Escher,” will be presented Thursday, April 20, 3-4 p.m. in 103 Cook. In addition to those with a love of mathematics and its teaching, this talk should be of interest to anyone who appreciates art and beauty. Jeff’s abstract provides more information.

**The Open Gate of Mathematics: From the Alhambra to Escher**

*In 1922, a 24-year-old artist named M.C. Escher visited the Alhambra, a 13th-century Moorish fortress and palace in Granada, Spain. The stunning Islamic design and geometric patterns overwhelmed the young artist, who began a 50-year obsession with dividing the plane. Today, Escher’s name is synonymous with tessellations, symmetry, and impossible shapes. His art’s mathematical structure has affected fields as far-reaching as combinatorics, graph theory, non-Euclidean geometry, and crystallography. This seminar focuses on Escher’s exploration of the two-dimensional plane and his link to the Moorish artisans of the past, begging the question: Were these artists doing math? *

Both talks will be accessible to a wide range of students, faculty and administrators. As always, everyone is welcome to attend. Assorted refreshments will be available at 2:45 p.m.

### Mathematics Seminars look at origin of numbers, Escher

April 14, 2017The Grand Rapids Community College Mathematics Department is pleased to announce that it will host presentations by two current students at its final Mathematics Seminars of academic year 2016-2017.

The first seminar features José Garcia, who will discuss “The Origins of Numbers” on Tuesday, April 18, 3-4 p.m. in 103 Cook. This talk should appeal to those with an interest in mathematics, mathematics education and history. Jose’s abstract follows.

**The Origins of Numbers**

*Every time we wonder if there is enough money to buy that new iPad AND groceries, numbers are used. We take for granted what it means to do basic arithmetic and, even more so, why the numbers came to be the way they are. Come join us in looking into the origins of numbers and why they look the way they do today!*

Our second talk will be given by Jeff Powers. His topic, “The Open Gate of Mathematics: From the Alhambra to Escher,” will be presented Thursday, April 20, 3-4 p.m. in 103 Cook. In addition to those with a love of mathematics and its teaching, this talk should be of interest to anyone who appreciates art and beauty. Jeff’s abstract provides more information.

**The Open Gate of Mathematics: From the Alhambra to Escher**

*In 1922, a 24-year-old artist named M.C. Escher visited the Alhambra, a 13th-century Moorish fortress and palace in Granada, Spain. The stunning Islamic design and geometric patterns overwhelmed the young artist, who began a 50-year obsession with dividing the plane. Today, Escher’s name is synonymous with tessellations, symmetry, and impossible shapes. His art’s mathematical structure has affected fields as far-reaching as combinatorics, graph theory, non-Euclidean geometry, and crystallography. This seminar focuses on Escher’s exploration of the two-dimensional plane and his link to the Moorish artisans of the past, begging the question: Were these artists doing math? *

Both talks will be accessible to a wide range of students, faculty and administrators. As always, everyone is welcome to attend. Assorted refreshments will be available at 2:45 p.m.

### Mathematics Seminar is today

April 13, 2017The Grand Rapids Community College Mathematics Department is pleased to announce that it will host its next Mathematics Seminar on Thursday, April 13, 3:00-4:00 PM in 103 Cook. Our speaker will be current GRCC mathematics student Carolyn Evans. Her topic is Pythagoras and the Pythagoreans. Please see below for the title and abstract.

In the realm of mathematics, the name Pythagoras is usually associated with right triangles and not much else. However, within the context of philosophy and history, there is a great deal more to consider. The teachings of Pythagoras and the Pythagorean Society had significant influence on ancient Greek philosophers and the evolution of Western thought. This seminar will be of interest to a wide range of individuals; everyone is welcome to attend.

Pop and cookies will be served at 2:45 PM.

**Math Hippies – The Pythagoreans**

Once upon a time, in an Italian seaport far far away, a strange cult of young aristocrats arose under the leadership of the mystical and mysterious Pythagoras…

The Pythagoreans were a philosophical society with some pretty radical world views and hippie-esque habits. They believed “that the elevation of the soul to union with the divine occurs by means of mathematics”, and that being strict vegetarians, abstinent from alcohol, and keeping no personal belongings would help them reach this goal.

This seminar will cover some of the philosophical foundations, famous legends, mathematical discoveries, and longstanding impacts that this group accomplished thousands of years ago.

### Mathematics Seminar to look at Pythagoreans

April 12, 2017The Grand Rapids Community College Mathematics Department is pleased to announce that it will host its next Mathematics Seminar on Thursday, April 13, 3:00-4:00 PM in 103 Cook. Our speaker will be current GRCC mathematics student Carolyn Evans. Her topic is Pythagoras and the Pythagoreans. Please see below for the title and abstract.

In the realm of mathematics, the name Pythagoras is usually associated with right triangles and not much else. However, within the context of philosophy and history, there is a great deal more to consider. The teachings of Pythagoras and the Pythagorean Society had significant influence on ancient Greek philosophers and the evolution of Western thought. This seminar will be of interest to a wide range of individuals; everyone is welcome to attend.

Pop and cookies will be served at 2:45 PM.

**Math Hippies – The Pythagoreans**

Once upon a time, in an Italian seaport far far away, a strange cult of young aristocrats arose under the leadership of the mystical and mysterious Pythagoras…

The Pythagoreans were a philosophical society with some pretty radical world views and hippie-esque habits. They believed “that the elevation of the soul to union with the divine occurs by means of mathematics”, and that being strict vegetarians, abstinent from alcohol, and keeping no personal belongings would help them reach this goal.

This seminar will cover some of the philosophical foundations, famous legends, mathematical discoveries, and longstanding impacts that this group accomplished thousands of years ago.

### Student Carolyn Evans to lead Mathematics Seminar

April 6, 2017The Grand Rapids Community College Mathematics Department is pleased to announce that it will host its next Mathematics Seminar on Thursday, April 13, 3:00-4:00 PM in 103 Cook. Our speaker will be current GRCC mathematics student Carolyn Evans. Her topic is Pythagoras and the Pythagoreans. Please see below for the title and abstract.

In the realm of mathematics, the name Pythagoras is usually associated with right triangles and not much else. However, within the context of philosophy and history, there is a great deal more to consider. The teachings of Pythagoras and the Pythagorean Society had significant influence on ancient Greek philosophers and the evolution of Western thought. This seminar will be of interest to a wide range of individuals; everyone is welcome to attend.

Pop and cookies will be served at 2:45 PM.

**Math Hippies – The Pythagoreans**

Once upon a time, in an Italian seaport far far away, a strange cult of young aristocrats arose under the leadership of the mystical and mysterious Pythagoras…

The Pythagoreans were a philosophical society with some pretty radical world views and hippie-esque habits. They believed “that the elevation of the soul to union with the divine occurs by means of mathematics”, and that being strict vegetarians, abstinent from alcohol, and keeping no personal belongings would help them reach this goal.

This seminar will cover some of the philosophical foundations, famous legends, mathematical discoveries, and longstanding impacts that this group accomplished thousands of years ago.

### Math Awareness Month contest

April 5, 2017April is Math Awareness Month and we all know that means it is time for the Math Awareness Month Contest. You might win a prize! The contest is open to all students and staff. Printed forms may be picked up from the Math Tutoring Lab on 1st floor Cook. Entries are due by Monday, April 17. Details are on the entry form.

### Mathematics Seminar is today

April 5, 2017The Grand Rapids Community College Mathematics Department is pleased to announce that it will host its next Mathematics Seminar on Wednesday, April 5, 3:00-4:00 PM in 103 Cook. Our speaker will be former GRCC mathematics student Duy Duong-Tran. His topic is Community Structure in Networks. The title and abstract may be found below.

Community structures have been studied by sociologists since the 1930s. Mathematicians got involved in the 1950s, and tremendous growth in the use of social media has made this a popular area of mathematical study. Parts of this talk may require knowledge of non-elementary mathematics, but, as always, everyone is invited to attend.

Pop and cookies will be served at 2:45 PM.

**Community Structure in Networks**

*The past two decades have witnessed tremendous growth in complex network analysis, as social and biological interactions, and the world-wide web, can be modeled in this framework. In this talk, we will survey different methodological approaches used to analyze community (cluster) structure in complex networks. We will also look at classical bi-section (two-cluster) network models and apply algebraic Eigen decomposition to analyze such networks.*

### Mathematics Seminar focuses on community structure in networks

April 4, 2017The Grand Rapids Community College Mathematics Department is pleased to announce that it will host its next Mathematics Seminar on Wednesday, April 5, 3:00-4:00 PM in 103 Cook. Our speaker will be former GRCC mathematics student Duy Duong-Tran. His topic is Community Structure in Networks. The title and abstract may be found below.

Community structures have been studied by sociologists since the 1930s. Mathematicians got involved in the 1950s, and tremendous growth in the use of social media has made this a popular area of mathematical study. Parts of this talk may require knowledge of non-elementary mathematics, but, as always, everyone is invited to attend.

Pop and cookies will be served at 2:45 PM.

**Community Structure in Networks**

*The past two decades have witnessed tremendous growth in complex network analysis, as social and biological interactions, and the world-wide web, can be modeled in this framework. In this talk, we will survey different methodological approaches used to analyze community (cluster) structure in complex networks. We will also look at classical bi-section (two-cluster) network models and apply algebraic Eigen decomposition to analyze such networks.*

### Former student Duy Duong-Tran to lead Mathematics Seminar

March 29, 2017The Grand Rapids Community College Mathematics Department is pleased to announce that it will host its next Mathematics Seminar on Wednesday, April 5, 3:00-4:00 PM in 103 Cook. Our speaker will be former GRCC mathematics student Duy Duong-Tran. His topic is Community Structure in Networks. The title and abstract may be found below.

Community structures have been studied by sociologists since the 1930s. Mathematicians got involved in the 1950s, and tremendous growth in the use of social media has made this a popular area of mathematical study. Parts of this talk may require knowledge of non-elementary mathematics, but, as always, everyone is invited to attend.

Pop and cookies will be served at 2:45 PM.

**Community Structure in Networks**

*The past two decades have witnessed tremendous growth in complex network analysis, as social and biological interactions, and the world-wide web, can be modeled in this framework. In this talk, we will survey different methodological approaches used to analyze community (cluster) structure in complex networks. We will also look at classical bi-section (two-cluster) network models and apply algebraic Eigen decomposition to analyze such networks.*

### Physical Sciences hosts STEM event

March 20, 2017Last month, the Physical Sciences Department hosted a collaborative public outreach event led by faculty and students from GRCC and Van Andel Institute. The event, titled “Fall in Love With STEM” was part of a series of similar events sponsored by the Association of Women in Science West Michigan chapter. The GRCC site featured a unique “Exploration Station” format, where middle-school-aged registrants investigated scientific disciplines across science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, making this a true STEM event.

From the Physical Sciences Department, Assistant Professor Ashley Campanali led a station on engineering and Assistant Professor Lauren Woolsey led a station on astronomy. From the Mathematics Department, GRCC student Rachel Swem led her own station on mathematics and game theory. From the Biological Sciences Department, Professor Leigh Kleinert organized a station that was run entirely by the following GRCC students as part of their service learning program: Shelsy DeLeon-Lopez, Afrika Earvin, Alma Garcia-Bautista, Mollie Hettinger, Brendan Howe, Jenna Meyers, Mauricio Perez, Monica Rivera, Taylor Swift, Megan Thomas, and Ana Villagomez.

Sincere thanks and congratulations to all those involved, including the countless volunteers and support staff who made this event possible! Other station leaders include Alison Bernstein (MSU), Jamie Grit (VAI), Marie Adams (VAI), Allie Weber (VAI), and Jacqueline Peacock (FSU). Julie Turner led the VAI logistics and event registration, and Lauren Woolsey led the GRCC logistics and event setup. Photos in this post were taken by Katie Krajnak from VAI. Dozens of families attended this inaugural event, and we look forward to expanding the event in future years!

### Mathematics Seminar is today

March 14, 2017The Grand Rapids Community College Mathematics Department is pleased to announce that it will host its next Mathematics Seminar on Tuesday, March 14, 3:00-4:00 p.m. in 101 Cook. Our speaker will be GRCC mathematics instructor Nancy Forrest, and she will discuss the number pi. Her title and abstract are below.

Numbers, like people, are all special in their own way, but pi is one the very few numbers that has its own day. Mathematicians, teachers, students and mathematical aficionados of all stripes will take a few minutes on March 14 to pause and reflect on a number that has fascinated (some might say obsessed) people for over 2000 years. This talk will have something for everyone, so a high level of mathematical sophistication is not required. Everyone is always welcome to our mathematics seminars.

Pop and cookies will be served at 2:45 p.m.

**Pi****, My Favorite Number**

*One might argue that there is an infinite supply of interesting numbers. But no other number has generated as much curiosity, international competition, and mathematical passion as pi. Plus it even boasts a holiday; Pi Day is on 3/14. This talk will include highlights of the history of pi, how it was named, calculation of its value, and various ways people have memorized some of its digits.*

### Nancy Forrest to lead Mathematics Seminar

March 13, 2017The Grand Rapids Community College Mathematics Department is pleased to announce that it will host its next Mathematics Seminar on Tuesday, March 14, 3:00-4:00 p.m. in 101 Cook. Our speaker will be GRCC mathematics instructor Nancy Forrest, and she will discuss the number pi. Her title and abstract are below.

Numbers, like people, are all special in their own way, but pi is one the very few numbers that has its own day. Mathematicians, teachers, students and mathematical aficionados of all stripes will take a few minutes on March 14 to pause and reflect on a number that has fascinated (some might say obsessed) people for over 2000 years. This talk will have something for everyone, so a high level of mathematical sophistication is not required. Everyone is always welcome to our mathematics seminars.

Pop and cookies will be served at 2:45 p.m.

**Pi****, My Favorite Number**

*One might argue that there is an infinite supply of interesting numbers. But no other number has generated as much curiosity, international competition, and mathematical passion as pi. Plus it even boasts a holiday; Pi Day is on 3/14. This talk will include highlights of the history of pi, how it was named, calculation of its value, and various ways people have memorized some of its digits.*

### Mathematics Seminar will look at pi

March 1, 2017The Grand Rapids Community College Mathematics Department is pleased to announce that it will host its next Mathematics Seminar on Tuesday, March 14, 3:00-4:00 p.m. in 101 Cook. Our speaker will be GRCC mathematics instructor Nancy Forrest, and she will discuss the number pi. Her title and abstract are below.

Numbers, like people, are all special in their own way, but pi is one the very few numbers that has its own day. Mathematicians, teachers, students and mathematical aficionados of all stripes will take a few minutes on March 14 to pause and reflect on a number that has fascinated (some might say obsessed) people for over 2000 years. This talk will have something for everyone, so a high level of mathematical sophistication is not required. Everyone is always welcome to our mathematics seminars.

Pop and cookies will be served at 2:45 p.m.

**Pi****, My Favorite Number**

*One might argue that there is an infinite supply of interesting numbers. But no other number has generated as much curiosity, international competition, and mathematical passion as pi. Plus it even boasts a holiday; Pi Day is on 3/14. This talk will include highlights of the history of pi, how it was named, calculation of its value, and various ways people have memorized some of its digits.*