Tyler Perini was keen to study math, but he wanted the freedom to combine his love of the subject with other academic areas. That’s why he chose the College. Since then, he’s studied in Estonia, done significant research and written algorithms for a hightech company, all before getting his degree.
“When I checked out the math department at the College,” Tyler says, “several things appealed to me. It’s within a liberal arts institution, so there’s a lot of flexibility in what you can study, and it’s not a huge department, so I knew I’d have the opportunity to work closely with professors.”
Those opportunities started right away. During his first summer at the College, Tyler’s advisor got him involved in a research project analyzing the seasonal performance of men’s collegiate basketball teams and using that data to predict the outcome of the annual March Madness tournament.
He then took a linear optimization course, and says, “That was very cool. It showed me how math can be applied in so many interesting areas. I was aware of that, but I hadn’t really experienced it. That course was a turning point for me.”
With encouragement from his advisor, Tyler joined two professors (one from psychology and one from philosophy) on a research project involving humility. “We’re examining that concept to see if we can define it, quantify it and ultimately predict it. My work specifically involves analyzing the written texts of our subjects. I’ve developed an algorithm to do this and it’s proven to be over 60 percent accurate.”
Tyler augmented his work in the major by taking courses at the University of Tartu in Estonia for a semester. “I wouldn’t have had that opportunity if not for the math department,” he explains. “Actually, I wouldn’t have had a lot of the opportunities that have come my way. The professors in this department are amazing, and there are so many possibilities for math majors here.”
Mathematics is one of the oldest academic disciplines yet it has unlimited applications in the contemporary world. We offer five distinct tracks within the major: pure math, applied math, actuarial math, statistics and teaching.
Our faculty have a broad range of specialties from pure mathematics to combinatorial number theory, mathematical physics, logic and set theory, probability, web analytics, nonlinear wave theory and much more.
❱❱ Some of our graduates pursue advanced degrees and work in such areas as statistics, biometry, computer science, information science and operations research. Others go on to careers in a diverse array of fields such as astronomy, robotics, medicine, insurance and business.