Welcome to FSU Mathematics
Welcome to the Department of Mathematics at Florida State University, home to researchers, educators, students and a supporting staff that strive for excellence in mathematics. The cutting-edge research of our faculty and students covers a broad spectrum of pure and applied mathematics, creating a vibrant scientific atmosphere in the department.
American Mathematical Society Inaugural Fellows
In November 2012, The American Mathematical Society honored 1119 mathematicians in their first class of Fellows. Three FSU math department professors John Bryant, Robert Gilmer, and DeWitt Sumners numbered among them. Looking back on their long careers and substantial contributions to the field, they've been kind enough to offer their reflections and advice on the field of mathematics, at FSU and beyond.
Alumni Profile: Caroline Maher-Boulis, Associate Professor at Lee University
Caroline Maher-Boulis got her Ph.D. in Mathematics at Florida State University in Spring 2004, under the direction of Professor Wolfgang Heil. Her first job was as Assistant Professor at Lee University, where she continues today as an Associate Professor.
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: 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: Harsh Jain
When new faculty member Dr. Harsh Jain was attending high school in India, he had no idea he would go on to flourish in an exciting career in biomathematics. Dr. Jain describes his career choice as a "happy accident"-during high school he showed a strong dislike for mathematics but didn't know what other major to declare in college. Advised that with a mathematics degree he could pursue anything he chose, he passed his qualifiers for pure math and then stumbled into biomathematics, thinking, "Who had ever heard of biomath?"