On Reading day, Thursday, May 7th, the Mathematics Department will continue the tradition of holding the Layman Prize Competition for Undergraduate Research in Mathematics. The competition will be held from 10 am  - noon over ZOOM:  https://virginiatech.zoom.us/j/93192964482

This year, six students are participating. Each contributor will given 20 minutes to present their work and answer questions from the panel of judges.

The students, in presentation order, along with the titles of the projects and their research advisors are:

  • Elizabeth Duncan: "Modeling T-cell differentiation" (Childs)
  • Thomas Grady: "Generalized Adjoint-based Halo Exchange for Distributed Deep Learning" (Hewett)
  • Robyn Greissinger: "Analyzing the Development and Interconnectedness of Ebola Compartmental Models" (Childs)
  • Sung Hyun Kim: "Approximating the Domain of Attraction for Quadratic Systems using Feedback Control" (Borggaard)
  • Rachael Stryker:   "How can student generated drawings be used to offload the cognitive demand of mathematical tasks(Norton)
  • Emma Stump: "Parasitism of Aedes albopictus by Ascogregarina taiwanensis lowers its competitive ability against Aedes triseriatus" (Childs)

The Layman Research Competition was started in 1996 by John Layman who began the funding of an annual prize of $250 for undergraduate research in mathematics. He named the competition in honor of his parents,  John C. and Elsie M. Layman. John graduated with honors from Virginia Tech in 1954 with a degree in mathematics. He joined the mathematics faculty in 1958 and subsequently retired in 1995. John Layman passed away in February 2017.

This competition is open to any undergraduate who has completed a research project in mathematics.  Recent winners of the Layman Prize were 

  • 2018: Arianna Krinos and Aimee Maurais ( Advisor: Matthias Chung). 
    • Title: Parameter and Uncertainty Estimation for a Model of Atmospheric CO2 Observations via Markov Chain Monte  Carlo Methods
  • 2017: Bryan Kaperick ( Advisor: Matthias Chung),  
    • Title: A Block Hadamard Probing Method for Diagonal Estimation

You can see the complete list of winners posted on the Undergraduate Reseach page on the Mathematics Department Website.