Welcome to FSU Mathematics
Our mission is to preserve, expand, and disseminate mathematical knowledge. We are committed to excellence in teaching and mentoring at the graduate and the undergraduate level, and to excellence in research in the mathematical sciences. FSU is one of the only two pre-eminent universities in the State of Florida. The Mathematics Department has 36 research faculty members whose research covers a broad spectrum of mathematics and its applications. Research areas covered include...
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."
Mariel Vazquez Alumni Profile
Mariel Vazquez, who earned her Ph.D. in math at FSU, has received a prestigious National Science Foundation (NSF) CAREER Award for her research. She applies pure math to the biological mysteries of DNA, studying its entanglement as it packs tightly into living cells. Born and raised in Mexico City, Vazquez became fascinated with math and biology in high school. "I found pure mathematics to be absolutely beautiful but I didn't know how I could apply it to biology," Vazquez said. That changed when she became an undergraduate at the National Autono- mous University of Mexico and attended a series of talks about DNA topology - the application of knot theory to the study of DNA.
Faculty Research: Richard Bertram
People are often confused about what Richard Bertram, a professor in the FSU Mathematics department and the director of the Biomathematics program, does for a living. At mathematics conferences he encounters people who thought he was a biologist, while at biology conferences he is known as “the math guy”.
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?
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.