Clifford John Earle Jr., Professor Emeritus of Mathematics, passed away on June 12, 2017 at the age 81 at Hospicare in Ithaca. His wife Elizabeth was by his side. Cliff was a calm and thoughtful presence in the Department for over five decades.
Undergraduate senior, Vivian Kuperberg, has been recognized as a Merrill scholar by Cornell University. Approximately one percent of each year’s undergraduate senior class are selected by their college deans for their intellectual drive, leadership abilities, and potential to contribute to society. The seniors, in turn, each nominate a high school teacher and a Cornell faculty member who have been most influential in their development as students and scholars.
For more than 25 years, the Department of Mathematics has been engaged in outreach and building solid partnerships with local teachers and schools, such as the annual T-shirt design contest held at Ithaca High School in honor of April's Math Awareness Month.
Contrary to popular assumptions...research in mathematics doesn’t take talent or genius so much as hard work and obsession. “You get obsessed with certain problems, and you’re not able to stop thinking about them,” she says. “It’s curiosity-driven. Mathematicians study mathematics because they have to know.”
Results shared by Jason McCullough (Rider University) and Irena Peeva (Cornell University) are reshaping the field of commutative algebra: their counterexamples to the Eisenbud–Goto conjecture not only show that the conjectured bound does not hold but also that there is no bound on the regularity of irreducible varieties that is a polynomial function of the degree. Furthermore, McCullough and Peeva produced a beautiful and general machinery that is worthy of deeper study, and in fact they are working with collaborators on further papers.
Aaron Yeiser, a high school student at Perkiomen Valley High School, was award a second place Regeneron STS 2017 scholarship worth $175,000. Through the PRIMES mentoring program, Aaron has been doing research with Prof. Alex Townsend on a novel spectral element method for anisotropic meshes. Bravo, Aaron!
Doctoral candidates Smaranda Sandu, Lila Greco and James Barnes, officers of the Cornell student chapter of the Association for Women in Mathematics (AWM), and Tara Holm, professor of mathematics, faculty adviser. AWM seeks to increase the number of undergraduate women enrolled in mathematics courses at Cornell, create a support network for undergrad and graduate students and provide a forum to discuss issues pertaining to women in math.
As New Jersey drivers approach the George Washington Bridge to enter New York City, a digital sign flashes overhead with estimates of the delays on the upper and lower levels of the bridge. Most drivers choose the level with the shortest predicted wait. But a few savvy drivers choose the other level, expecting that the digital signs are lagging and that conditions will change by the time they arrive at the bridge.