Undergraduate Research and Independent Studies

Bianco Foster PP19
Bianco and Foster before their presentation at Pikes Peak 2019, US Air Force Academy
Albee and Roon before their presentation at Mathfest 2017 in Chicago.
Barnes and Parker before their presentation at Pikes Peak 2017, in Colorado Springs.

 

 

 

 

 

Undergraduate research projects and independent studies are excellent additional preparation for graduate school or working in teams in your future career.  They are a fun way to see mathematics outside of the ordinary undergraduate course catalog and to hone your mathematical thinking, writing, and presentation skills.  Projects like this often lead to presentations at the MCS Poster Presentations, MSU Denver Undergraduate Research Conference, statewide conferences like Pikes Peak, or even nation-wide conferences like Mathfest or JMM.  Some even lead to publications!

Official REUs (Research Experience for Undergraduates) at other universities are a prestigious and extremely worthwhile undertaking during the summer, but you can also take part in research projects with faculty (like me!) right here at MSU Denver during the semester.

This Semester:

In the current semester (Spring 2020), I am working with undergraduate students Courtney Fleming, Leland Minaker, Joseph Ruiz, Alex Tusa, and Gabe Vigil on a research project on the relationship between defect groups and the behavior of characters under Galois automorphisms.  They plan to present at the MSU Denver Undergraduate Research Conference, and maybe Pikes Peak and/or Mathfest 2020.

I’m also running an independent study in Category Theory with some of the same students!

Intrigued???

If you are an MSU Denver undergraduate student interested in doing a research project or independent study, I would love to work with you! Send me an email or stop by my office to chat.

I often run a course on representation theory that can lead to a (paid!) research project.  (The prereqs for this would be Abstract Algebra 1 and Linear Algebra).  But, if that doesn’t interest you or you don’t have the prereqs, I am definitely open to helping you look into other projects.

Here is what I’ve done in the past with undergraduates:

Term Students Project Extra Outcomes
Spring 2021 Andrew Peña; Frank Pryor Research Project: Galois Automorphisms, Defect Groups, and Characters II presentation at MSU Denver’s Undergrad Research Conference
Fall 2020 Andrew Peña; Frank Pryor Independent Study: Representations of Finite Groups
Fall 2020-Spring 2021 Courtney Fleming; Joseph Ruiz Continued Research Project: Galois Automorphisms, Defect Groups, and Characters presentation at 2021 Rocky Mountain MAA Sectional Meeting
Spring 2020 Courtney Fleming; Leland Minaker; Joseph Ruiz; Gabe Vigil Independent Study: Investigations in Category Theory  poster at MSU Denver Undergrad Research Conference
Spring 2020 Courtney Fleming; Leland Minaker; Joseph Ruiz; Alex Tusa; Gabe Vigil Research Project: Galois Automorphisms, Defect Groups, and Characters presentation at MSU Denver’s Undergrad Research Conference
Fall 2019 Courtney Fleming; Leland Minaker; Joseph Ruiz; Alex Tusa; Gabe Vigil Independent Study: Representations of Finite Groups
Spring 2019 Courtney Fleming; Keegan Karbach Independent Study: Representation Theory in Physics  Poster at MSU Denver’s Undergrad Research Conference
Spring 2019 Brittany Bianco; Elizabeth Foster Research Project: Automorphisms and Characters of Finite Groups Presentations at Nebraska Conf for Undergrad Women in Math 2019; Pikes Peak 2019; MSU Denver’s Undergrad Research Conference; and MAA Mathfest 2019 in Cincinnati
Fall 2018 Brittany Bianco; Elizabeth Foster Independent Study: Representations of Finite Groups
Summer 2017-Fall 2017 Kempton Albee; Eric Roon Research Project: Irreducible Character Restrictions Paper published; presentation at MAA Mathfest 2017, Chicago (winners of MAA “Outstanding Presentation” award!)
Spring 2017 Kempton Albee; Eric Roon Independent Study: Representations of Finite Groups
Fall 2016 – Spring 2017 Mike Barnes; Aaron Parker Research Project: Irreducible Character Restrictions Paper published; presentations at Pikes Peak 2017 and MSU Denver’s Undergrad Research Conference
Fall 2016 Devon Bata; Jacquelyn Combellick; Jacob Wiley Independent Study: Representations of Finite Groups
Spring 2016 Mike Barnes; Matt Lum; Aaron Parker  Independent Study: Representations of Finite Groups
Spring 2016 Eric Roon  Research Project: Permutation Groups in Music Theory Paper published; presentation at MSU Denver’s Undergrad Research Conference
Fall 2015 Ethan Johnston; Greg Mah  Independent Study: Cryptography and Coding Theory 
Spring 2015 Isabel Corona; Bryan Curtis; Maggie Gourlay; Ethan Kowalenko; Alex Myers  Independent Study: Representations of Finite Groups