Faculty Research: Mike Mesterton-Gibbons
Among questions of interest to biologists who study animal behavior are these: When should an animal - for example, a fiddler crab - intervene to help a neighbor having a territorial dispute with an intruder? Does eavesdropping - for example, by green swordtail fish - increase or reduce the overall frequency of aggressive behavior in a population? How widespread in nature is mutual assessment of fighting abilities? To be sure, humans do it, but what about hermit crabs or sea anenomes? And if strength is indeed being assessed, when does it pay for a threat to be a bluff?
Alumni Profile: Kurt Vinhage
Kurt Vinhage, Class of '10 (Florida State University, Bachelor of Science Degree in Mathematics). Kurt Vinhage is currently enrolled in the mathematics PhD. program at Penn State University. As an FSU senior, he wrote an honor's these with Mike Mesterton-Gibbons on "an investigation into small group stability with respect to parity". During a summer REU in 2009, he co-authored a paper on "Super edge-graceful lavelings of total graphs and total cycles", which was published in the journal of Combinatorial Mathematics and Combinatorial Computing.
Alumni Profile: Mike Kirby
While journeying through his career, Kirby says that his favorite part was the experience of teaching and mentoring PhD students at Cambridge in England while on sabbatical. There he recognized a difference in PhD students, saying, "what distinguishes a PhD student is that they can learn anything on their own, but it's interesting to see a PhD student go back to undergrad material with new understanding."
Alumni Profile: Kim Ruane, Professor at Tufts University
Kim Ruane's path to FSU was an unusual one. Her undergraduate degree was from Kennesaw State University in north Georgia and it just so happened that a professor there, Chris Schaufele, had gone to graduate school with DeWitt Sumners, a professor at FSU. These two were responsible for Kim's decision to attend FSU for graduate school.
Faculty Profile: Kate Petersen, Assistant Professor
When FSU Assistant Professor of Mathematics Kate Petersen was growing up in Philadelphia, she had no idea that a career in mathematics was in her future. Her parents, an engineer and a nurse, couldn't have predicted it either. Even when she went away to Oberlin College in Ohio for her undergraduate education, math wasn't really on her radar.