This is the first time for SDSU to join the NOAA EPP program, since SDSU was named an HSI in 2012. SDSU’s participation in this NOAA EPP is through the Center for Climate and Sustainability Studies (C2S2), an SDSU Area of Excellence, founded in 2013. The SDSU site PI is **Sam Shen**, Co-Director of C2S2 and Distinguished Professor of Mathematics and Statistics. Geography Assistant Professor Fernando De Sales and Mathematics Associate Professor **Bo-Wen Shen** are SDSU site Co-PIs. This program will provide training fellowships to the under-represented minority students, graduate or undergraduate, in any major, as long as the students are interested in pursuing the future NOAA employment or similar kind. The training fellows will have chance to conduct research at NOAA facilities. A fellow must be a U.S. citizen and maintain a minimum 3.2 GPA. The details of the program can be found from the award announcement and the program headquarters website at Howard University. The students who are interested in this program can contact Dr. Sam Shen for more information.

*Photo: NCAS doctoral candidate Jose Rivas, participated in the annual Earth Science Week at the University of Texas, El Paso (UTEP). The activity included launching a weather-balloon for atmospheric observations. *

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STATMOS’ lead PI is Montserrat Fluentes, North Carolina State University, with Michael Stein of University of Chicago and Peter Guttorp of University of Washington as co-PIs. Barb Bailey and Rich Levine founded the SDSU node and Sam Shen helped set up the SIO node. The SDSU-SIO sub-network enables both SDSU and SIO students and faculty to receive STATMOS funding for collaborative research between the two institutions.

Shen leads the STATMOS interest group of nonstationary space-time process. Bailey directs the SDSU node of STATMOS. They both attended the STATMOS annual meeting at University of Chicago on July 31, 2016.

]]>Turbulence mitigation algorithms have gained a lot of attention in the last decade and several algorithms are now available. Unfortunately, since this problem is generally involved in Defense applications, there is no common dataset to assess such algorithms. The purpose of Gilles’ grant is to create a free open dataset of observations acquired through atmospheric turbulence. A camera with different lenses will be purchased to run several scenarios of interest for the Defense community. The project involves an undergraduate student and we expect to use the proximity of the desert to make several observation by the end of the Summer. It is expected that this dataset will be released online by the end of 2016. Pictured: Nicholas Ferrante (SDSU), and Dr. Gilles.

The project is based on a partnership between SDSU, three museums in Balboa Park: Mingei International Museum, Reuben H. Fleet Science Center, and the Museum of Photographic Arts, as well as the Boys’ and Girls’ Club of Southeast San Diego.

Current work and programs conducted by InforMath include:

1. A new exhibition at the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center entitled “Taking Shape” is open to the public. The exhibition brings together art and mathematics, the latter focused on topology concepts. The structure made out of packing tape is large enough for visitors to walk inside to explore its layout. It includes three areas inspired by the following surfaces of: 1) Torus, 2) Schwarz P, and 3) Pair-of-Pants. Working areas associated with these topologies are being setup.

2. A program on basket weaving and curvature has been conducted at the Mingei International Museum and the Boys’ and Girls’ Club of Southeast San Diego. Children from Chulavista who have volunteered to enroll worked three sessions at the Mingei and three at their after school facilities. They explored the current exhibition “Made in America,” created woven forms, and sewed fabric bowls.

3. A new exhibition at the Museum of Photographic Arts is in preparation. Its theme is 3D photography and the mathematics of depth perception.

4. A new program on Music and Mathematics is going to start in April. Children from the Boys’ and Girls’ Club of Southeast San Diego will be transported weekly to the Reuben H, Fleet Science Center. They will use a new exhibit called “Dance Math” to develop mathematical ways of representing dance and rhythm. The program will end with a public performance combining drumming, dance, and chanting.

]]>A significant contribution of the work will be connecting the research on mathematics learning generally with research on mathematics learning of English language learners. In addition to advancing theoretical understandings, the research will also contribute practical resources and guidance for mathematics teachers who teach English language learners.

The Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) program is a National Science Foundation (NSF)-wide activity that offers awards in support of junior faculty who exemplify the role of teacher-scholars through outstanding research, excellent education, and the integration of education and research within the context of the mission of their organizations.

Zahner’s abstract is available on the NSF website below.

http://www.nsf.gov/awardsearch/showAward?AWD_ID=1553708&HistoricalAwards=false

**Antoni Luque**, Ph.D. (Universitat de Barcelona, 2011). Dr. Luque is a physicist specialized in mathematical biology. His research spans the areas of theoretical and computational biophysics and has focused on the study of viruses and chromatin fibers. He has investigated these systems by combining condensed matter physics, applied mathematics, and computational biology in collaboration with experimentalists. Dr. Luque’s research has been previously conducted in the Universitat de Barcelona, University of California, Los Angeles, and New York University. At SDSU, he is part of the Area of Excellence in viromics. As a member of the Viral Information Institute, the Luque Lab aspires to develop multiscale mathematical models that investigate how changes in the structural properties of viruses impact viral ecology.

**Principal Investigator:** David Bressoud. **Co-PIs:** Linda Braddy, Jessica Ellis, Sean Larsen, and **Chris Rasmussen**. Funded by the National Science Foundation, 2015-2019, $2,250,000.

This project will build on the insights from *Characteristics of Successful Programs in College Calculus* to explore the factors influencing student success over the progression of introductory mathematics courses that begins with Precalculus and continues through the full year of single variable calculus. This sequence, required of most STEM majors, will be referred to as *Precalculus to Calculus* II (P2C2). Two research questions will be investigated using a national census survey of universities offering advanced degrees in Mathematics, case study visits to selected universities, and the gathering of longitudinal data.

**What are the programs and structures of the P2C2 sequence as currently implemented? **How common are the various programs and structures? How varied are they in practice? What kinds of changes have recently been undertaken or are currently underway?

**What are the effects of structural, curricular, and pedagogical decisions on student success in P2C2? **Success will be assessed on a variety of measures including longitudinal measures of persistence and retention, performance in subsequent courses, knowledge of both precalculus and calculus topics, and student attitudes.

The answers to these questions will be leveraged to develop a theoretical model that can be used to guide departments in deciding how to allocate resources so as to most effectively improve student success in Calculus. While much is now known about why students leave STEM fields, there is little connection between this theoretical knowledge and the actual structures and programs of the P2C2 sequence. This project will provide that link, helping departments to more rationally decide how to invest their limited resources. Under the auspices of the Mathematical Association of America, a national census survey of institutions offering graduate programs in mathematics will produce a comprehensive picture of the ways that P2C2 sequences are structured and implemented across the country. Detailed case studies will investigate connections between aspects of P2C2 structures and student success. Success will be assessed using a variety of measures that will characterize it along multiple dimensions, including retention and student learning. The CSPCC project identified seven characteristics of more successful Calculus I programs at PhD granting institutions. The PtC project case studies will build on insights from CSPCC by exploring connections between these characteristics (as applied to P2C2) and student success. This design is well suited to provide practical insights into the changes to P2C2 programs that have the potential to produce various types of success outcomes.

]]>Dr. LaRose may be reached via email at UofM: http://www-personal.umich.edu/~glarose/

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The SDSU Mathematics Research Experience for Undergraduates completed its sixth year with a talented group of students, representing 14 outstanding institutions. These students worked on various problems from an area of number theory, nonunique factorization of numerical semigroups. A numerical semigroup is a subset of the whole numbers that is closed under addition. Here is one problem solved this summer: given a numerical semigroup whose generators are in arithmetical progression, find a formula that measures the maximal factorization length of any product of k generators. Vadim Ponomarenko was aided by technical consultants: Scott Chapman (Sam Houston State University), the Editor-in-Chief of the American Mathematical Monthly, and Pedro Garcia-Sanchez (Universidad de Granada), who gave lectures during the first week of the program and helped formulate the research problems.

The SDSU REU has been offered for eight weeks each summer since 2007, supported by grants from the National Science Foundation awarded to Dr. Ponomarenko. Participants often call the opportunity to engage in research a life-changing and immensely rewarding experience. They also have lots of fun in beautiful San Diego. The REU experience is great preparation for graduate school and is a very positive addition to a student’s application. Since its inception the SDSU REU has generated 18 technical reports, seven papers published, one under review, and four more in preparation. Copies of the reports and papers and information about the program is available on the SDSU REU website: http://www.sci.sdsu.edu/math-reu/index.html

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