February 22 Day 1081: Math People

These people right here, they are my kind of people—math people. Not necessarily math majors but students choosing to spend their lunch hour participating in an Integral Bee. There was community, celebration, a few extra credit points, and yes…integrals.

The Math Club at UW Tacoma organized it, advertised it, and made it a reality. Math professors showed up to spectate and support. And try a few Putnam inspired integrals as their own challenge.

It was great to attend an in-person on-campus event that wasn’t teaching class.

Congratulations to the UW Tacoma Math Club for a successful event—especially Phil and Yoshi (pictured in the center of the cover image). Congratulations to the winning team, “Coffee Cup.” I want to believe that their name is an oblique reference to the quote of Hungarian mathematician Alfred Renyi that “a mathematician is a machine for turning coffee into theorems.”

Integral Bee Champions Winter 2023—Team Coffee Cup!

Up next, the Math Club Pi Day celebration. I have volunteered to be pi(e)ed, along with many of my mathematical colleagues on March 9. The students decided it was preferable to celebrate during the last week of Winter Quarter classes rather than wait for the official date of March 14, which falls during our finals week. It will be our first genuine Pi Day celebration since 2019 because the 2020 Math Club plans were cancelled on Day 2 of the pandemic and there hasn’t been an in-person Pi-event since.

I’m very excited. If you find yourself on campus March 9, come celebrate with us. You don’t have to be a math major to enjoy the festivities. However if you participate, I will consider you a genuine Math Person.

Published by Jenny Quinn

Mathematician. Mother. Wife. Leader. I am a professor of mathematics at the University of Washington Tacoma. Mother of Anson and Zachary. Wife to Mark. President of the Mathematical Association of America.

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