Thursday, December 11, 2014

75th William Lowell Putnam Mathematical Competition

Saturday, December 6, 2014, Grace McCourt, Scott Glorioso, Paul Pernici and Alex Lillich participated in the 75th William Lowell Putnam Mathematical Competition. The participants of the William Lowell Putnam Mathematical Competition work on 6 problems from 10 a.m. - 1 p.m. and then 6 additional problems from 3 p.m. - 6 p.m. Typically, 50% of the participants who enter this competition nationwide, and in Canada, receive 0 points on it. Based on conversations with the AU participants a couple will receive a non-zero score this year, having solved problem B1, the first problem for the afternoon session. All AU participants gleaned insights on at least one of the problems, therefore, maybe even more will receive a non-zero score. Good job AU participants!

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Fall Study Break set for December 4 and 5

Math and Computer Science Students you are Cordially invited!

Congratulations December Graduates

Congratulations to all December Graduates. The Math and Computer Science Department has two graduates graduating. Congratulations to Junjun Huang and Christopher Yocum. Both are Computer Science majors.

ACM Competition

AU Tuffy Team
The ACM Competition was held on Saturday, November 8, 2014. There were 150 teams at the competition. The problems were really tough this year. Only 30 or so teams were able to solve at least one problem. Ashland University took three teams.

AU Tuffy Team consisted of Joe Hemerly, Cameron Goodson and Ben Bushong.
AU Purple Team consisted of Zack Brown, Alex Gregory and Nazumul Rabbi.
AU Gold Team consisted of Rupesh Marharjan, Chris Yocum and Brady Douglas.

The students enjoyed the experience and found the opportunity highly beneficial in applying what they have learned in the classroom to real world applications.
AU Purple Team
AU Gold Team

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Moseman's Internship at Union Home Mortgage

Joel Moseman (15') completed an internship at Union Home Mortgage in the secondary marketing department. The secondary marketing department is the department where loans were originated and processed and then sold to other entities such as Ginnie Mae or Fannie Mae.

Although the internship was not an actuarial position, it was loosely related. Moseman updated loan information and sometimes loan pricing, based on changed characteristics of the loan or the applicant. Risk characteristics such as the borrower's FICO score and down payment amount affect pricing. Moseman also learned about how interest rate risk was managed.

Moseman Passes the FM Exam

Moseman Passes FM Exam
Joel Moseman (15') has passed the Society of Actuaries' Financial Mathematics Exam (FM Exam). The exam tests the candidate's knowledge of  annuities, bond valuation, immunization, time-value of money, derivative uses and strategy.

The test requires hundreds of hours of study, the recommended being 300 hours. Moseman took Ashland University's Financial Mathematics course to help prepare for the FM Exam.

Congratulations, Joel, and Good Luck!

For more information about the Actuarial Science Program, Contact Dr. Christopher Swanson, at or visit the website

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Tresch's Internship at Findley-Davies

Garrett Tresch
Garrett Tresch (15') completed an internship at Findley-Davies this summer. Findley-Davies is a firm that consults with the human resource department of other corporations. Findley-Davies has a wide variety of sectors that specialize in a different aspect of this often wide field, which includes an actuarial group in downtown Cleveland.

As an intern, Tresch discovered that the key to his position would be "variety." In addition to internship duties of scanning information and government filings, he also, created excel spreadsheets for companies pension plans, calculated actuarial equivalent forms of payment, updated databases to include changes in employee information, created excel charts and adjusted inputs that indicated a current law change dealing with interest rates. Tresch said, "The greatest way of defining what I did into a single sentence would be, 'I assisted the actuaries in the mathematical and technological work involved in the consulting of human resources.'"

Tresch accredits his higher end financial math, probability, and technology courses for his ability to understand and adjust to the many complicated tasks that were expected of him by Findley-Davies. He also accredits Ashland University's fantastic collection of professionals, that he said, "I could not have had such an enlightening experience without." He would like to give special thanks to Dr. Chris Swanson and Dr. Maduka Rupasinghe, as well as, the Career Service Department for their advice and coaching.

Tresch Passes Exam P

Garrett Tresch Passes Exam P

Garrett Tresch Passes Exam P

Garrett Tresch (15') has passed the Society of Actuaries' Probability Exam (Exam P). The exam tests the candidate's knowledge of the fundamental probability tools for quantitatively assessing risk.  Exam P is one of the exams required to achieve professional status as an actuary.

Actuaries are professionals who provide expert advice and relevant solutions for business and societal problems that involve economic risk. The actuarial profession is consistently ranked as one of the top 5 careers in the United States.

Congratulations, Garrett, and Good Luck!

For more information about the Actuarial Science Program, Contact Dr. Christopher Swanson, at or visit the website

Friday, September 12, 2014

Drop-In Tutoring Fall 2014

Do Not Struggle. Drop-In and see a Tutor! 

Drop-In Tutoring Available for Math Courses

Ashland University's Center for Academic Support provides tutors and other tools to help students succeed. Drop-in sessions are available for several Math classes in Kettering 219. Below are the classes and times for drop-in tutoring:




Math Tutoring Schedule Fall 2014

Calculus with Application (M201)
Thursdays 6:30-7:30 pm

The Calculus (M205)
Wednesdays 3-5 pm
Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday 7-8:30 pm

Elementary Statistics (M208)
Tuesdays 1-3 pm
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday 7-8:30 pm

Theory of Arithmetic & Geometry (M217)
Mondays 7-8:30 pm
Thursdays 7-8:30 pm

Geometry for Middle Grades (M218)
Tuesdays 7-8:30 pm
Wednesdays 7-8:30 pm

Discrete Math 1 (M223)
Thursdays 3-5 pm

Also, please see your professor for help!
Visit the Center for Academic Success for a complete list of all tutoring services available to AU students.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Congratulations to our Student Award Winners!

Congratulations to our 2014 Outstanding Math & Computer Science Seniors, Morgan Mirtes and Megan Raber.

These were among the more than 100 awards and accomplishments recognized at the 2014 Mathematics and Computer Science Department Academic Awards and Activity Recognition Reception.  The annual event took place at the John C. Myers Convocation Center on the evening of April 8, 2014.  About 70 students, friends, family members and university staff and faculty attended the event. 

Morgan Mirtes is an honors student from Norwalk, Ohio, double majoring in computer science and mathematics, with a minor in Music.  Her recent honors defense dealt with Android application development.  In addition to her challenging coursework, Mirtes completed internships with local businesses, was a member of the Pi Mu Epsilon and Upsilon Pi Epsilon honoraries.  

Raber will graduate with a double major in Integrated Mathematics and Mathematics, and a minor in Computer Science.  She is from Creston, Ohio and was active within the department in many organizations including Math Club and Pi Mu Epsilon officer team and the Problem Solving Group. 

Competition was fierce for this year’s coveted Outstanding Senior Award. Many of our graduating seniors have been very active in the department and 7 of them had math and computer science GPAs of 3.5 or higher.  Dr. Gordon Swain expressed a mixture of pride and loss at seeing this senior class graduate.  

Other Outstanding Student Awards were presented to underclassmen.  Paul Pernici was named Outstanding Junior.  Outstanding Sophomores were Alexander Lillich and Charles Michel.  In addition to these awards, Freshmen Ryan Bastian and Linda Morales shared the Carpenter Award for Outstanding Calculus Student and The Wendling Award for Outstanding Discrete Mathematics Student went to freshman Alyssa Predota.

The department also recognized all majors and minors with a 3.5 Math and Computer Science GPA of 3.5 or higher, graduating seniors, department scholarship recipients and donors, senior honorary members, student activity officers, student presentations, and contest participants. 

For more photos and a complete list of award winners, please visit the Math & Computer Science student page.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Two Computer Science Students to be Featured in Coburn Art Gallery Senior Exhibition II

Computer Science students Marissa Uhrig and D. Kees Edwards will be part of the Senior Art Exhibition II in the Coburn Art Gallery, April 24 – May 10.  Both students will be graduating this spring with dual majors in Computer Science and  Computer Art and Graphics Programming. 

The Senior Art Exhibition is the capstone experience for graduating art majors. It serves as a final graduation requirement and an opportunity for seniors to present their creativity and craftsmanship in a professional manner.  Uhrig and Edwards are among the 6 students who will present their artwork in the exhibition.  Other students will be showcasing their creations in ceramics, commercial art and digital art. 

Uhrig will present the digital art she creates by manipulating photographic images of the sky.  Her digital print "Monsters" was selected for the Dean's Award at the 2013 Juried Student Art Show in the Coburn Art Gallery. 

Edwards will be showcasing three game applications he created, as well as prints of some of the graphic images used in the games. 

Edwards and Uhrig are both officers in the student chapter of the Association of Computing Machinery and the Upsilon Pi Epsilon Honorary for Computer Science students.  They also were both participants in this years' College of Arts and Sciences' Undergraduate Research and Creative Activity Symposium (pictured above and below).  Above Edwards discusses how he used game theory, art principles and psychology to develop his own game apps.  He presented with fellow Computer Science senior Kenny Bogner.  Below, Marissa Uhrig discusses her art with College of Arts and Sciences Associate Dean, Mike Hupfer. 

The opening reception will be Thursday, April 24 from 4:30-6:30 p.m. and is open to the public.  Regular gallery hours are Monday - Friday, 10am - 5pm, Saturday - Sunday, noon - 4pm.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Retirement Reception for Dr. Thomas Dence, May 2

The Department of Mathematics and Computer Science will host a retirement reception for Dr. Thomas Dence, professor of mathematics. Colleagues and students are welcome to come and wish him well. The reception will be in Patterson Room 211 on Friday, May 2 from 11-2.  

During his 30 years at Ashland University, Dence has taught a variety of mathematics and computer science courses.  He was awarded the Ashland University "Mentor Award" in 2001 and 2009 and was the inaugural recipient of the university's Excellence in Scholarship Award in 2011.  In 2003, the Mathematical Association of America presented Dence with the Ohio Section Award for Distinguished College or University Teaching of Mathematics. In addition, Dence has published more than 60 articles in refereed journals and has authored or co-authored five textbooks on mathematics. His final semester of teaching was Fall 2013. 

Read more about Tom's storied career in the Fall 2013 Department of Mathematics and Computer Science newsletter. 

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Dr. Chris Swanson Receives Mathematics Teaching Award

During the spring meeting of the Ohio Section of the Mathematical Association of America, Dr. Christopher Swanson was awarded the 2014 Ohio Section Award for Distinguished College or University Teaching of Mathematics. The ceremony took place at the University of Toledo on Friday, April 5.

Swanson has been with Ashland University since 1999. In addition to teaching mathematics, he is also the director of the university Honors Program.   In 2006, the MAA also honored Dr. Swanson with a Henry L. Alder Award for Distinguished Teaching by a Beginning College or University Mathematics Faculty Member. 

Read more at the AU News Center 

Friday, April 4, 2014

Robotics & Machine Learning Class available for Fall Semester 2014

Looking for a unique Core Natural Sciences course?

The Mathematics and Computer Science Department will be offering CS 245 "Robotics and Machine Learning" this fall.  It will meet on MWF from 10:00 -10:50 a.m. in Kettering Science Center. 

There are no prerequisites and the course assumes no computer science background. Classroom instruction will include lecture and discussion as well as hands-on lab work with programming and building.

Topics covered include:

* history of robotics and machine learning

* philosophical perspectives and impact of artificial intelligence systems on society

* robot construction techniques

* robot navigation and manipulation techniques

* machine learning algorithms and their applications

* software robots

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Department Academic Awards and Activity Recognition Reception will be April 8, 2014

The Department of Mathematics & Computer Science will have their 2014 Academic Awards and Activity Recognition Reception on Tuesday, April 8, 2014 beginning at 7:00 p.m. in the Faculty Room of the John C. Myers Convocation Center.

This annual event will recognize students who have displayed excellent academic and/or leadership skills.  Recipients of the 2014 Outstanding Student Awards will be announced.  We will also recognize all department majors or minors with a math and computer science GPA of 3.5 of higher.  Others to be honored include graduating seniors, student organization officers, contest participants, scholarship recipients, and more.

Honorees and their families should be receiving personal invitations to attend this reception soon.  RSVP is requested by April 1 to or 419-289-5790.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Two Students Inducted into Upsilon Pi Epsilon Computer Science Honorary

Seniors Morgan Mirtes and Chris Yocum were recently inducted into the Ashland University chapter of Upsilon Pi Epsilon honor society. Mirtes is a senior from Norwalk, Ohio double majoring in Computer Science and Mathematics. Yocum is a senior from Ashland majoring in computer science. The induction ceremony was conducted on March 13, 2014, by current UPE members Marissa Uhrig, Kenny Bogner, and Kees Edwards.

Upsilon Pi Epsilon (UPE), is an international honor society for the computing and information disciplines, first organized at Texas A&M University in 1967. Today, this international organization consists of chapters at colleges and universities throughout North America and overseas. The mission of UPE is to recognize academic excellence at both the undergraduate and graduate levels in the computing and information disciplines.

Ashland University’s UPE Chapter was formed in January 2002. Sophomore, junior and senior computer science majors who meet the eligibility requirements are invited to join this prestigious honorary. Eligibility is based on progress in computer science coursework, grades earned from computer science courses, and a student’s cumulative grade point average. The chapter’s faculty advisor is Dr. Paul Cao.

Pictured (left to right) are Morgan Mirtes, Kees Edwards, Marissa Uhrig, Kenny Bogner, and Chris Yocum.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Three Math & Computer Science Students to Participate in This Year's URCA Symposium

Ashland University’s College of Arts and Sciences is hosting an Undergraduate Research and Creative Activity Symposium that will feature the works of approximately 46 students from 12 departments in the College.

According to Dr. Diane Bonfiglio, assistant professor of psychology, the April 1 symposium, which is free and open to the public, will be held from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. in the John C. Myers Convocation Center. The symposium will feature oral presentations, performances, poster presentations and art exhibitions.
Read full article.

The following Math and Computer Science students are participating this year.

Kees Edwards and Kenny Bogner – The Art of Strategy
Poster/Exhibition Session 1-2 p.m. in the Alumni Room
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Mark Nadler, Economics/Finance

Stacee King – Sub-rectangles and Super-rectangles: Creation and Properties
Oral Session 3:30 – 4:30 pm in the Faculty Room
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Chris Swanson, Math

Visit the URCA blogsite for updates.

Download a full schedule of URCA presentations. 

Students and faculty members are encouraged to attend the day's activities.  To foster participation, Dean Weber suspends daytime CAS classes so our faculty and students can attend the various events.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

International Pi Day is this Friday (March 14)

This Friday, 3-14, the world celebrates the 26th Annual Pi Day.  Pi Day was created in 1988 by Larry Shaw, staff physicist for the Exploratorium Museum in San Francisco. The Museum again has all day activities planned to celebrate including a pi parade. Check out these resources from their website and elsewhere for your Pi Day pleasure.

A Brief History of Pi 

Suggested Activities for Pi Day

Article about the creation of Pi Day and its Culinary Implications 

Monday, February 24, 2014

Math 341 Approved by Society of Actuaries for Validation by Educational Experience credit

Actuary candidates are required to complete “Validation by Educational Experience” (VEE) requirements for economics, corporate finance, and applied statistical methods in addition to passing exams and completing other membership requirements. The Society of Actuaries recently approved Math 341 (Applied Regression Analysis) to meet the regression component of the VEE requirement for Applied Statistical Methods. The approval is retroactive, applying to any students who have taken Math 341 since 2006.

Ashland University now offers courses which satisfy all the VEE requirements except the time series component of the Applied Statistical Methods requirement. To qualify for VEE credit, the candidate must earn a grade of B- or better.

For more information, you can visit the Society of Actuaries FAQs on Validation by Educational Experience at

What is an actuary?
It’s the number one job of 2013 – if you don’t know, you should! ranks careers on the basis of work environment, income, job growth outlook, and on-the-job stress. Actuary has been consistently in the top 10 for the past several years.

Actuaries are trained in risk management. They solve a variety of problems related to risk, such as determining premiums for insurance companies, helping companies establish their retirement plans, developing life insurance products and assisting banks in managing their assets and liabilities and developing ways to manage their financial risk.

Actuary Science takes a combination of strong analytical skills, business knowledge and understanding of human behavior. Interested in learning more? Check out the links below.

Be an actuary.- an overview of the career.
Ashland University's actuary program
sample curriculum

Monday, February 17, 2014

Time for Summer Planning

It may be cold and snowy outside, but it’s not too early to think about your summer plans!  

Here are some opportunities to create a summer experience that will heat up your career path. 

  • This Wednesday’s on campus Job, Internship and Graduate School Fair
  • American Mathematical Society’s Research Experience for Undergraduates summer programs.
  • Ongoing tools offered by AU Career Services

Details below.

2014 Spring Job, Internship, and Graduate School Fair
Wednesday, February 19th, 1-4 pm 
(come and go as you please)
Upper Convocation Center

Every AU student should attend!

Freshmen and Sophomores: Search for your next summer job or internship!

Juniors and Seniors:  Find your next internship or secure full-time employment!

All Students:  Obtain information about graduate programs across multiple states!

For more information, use the links below to…

including a list of employers attending the fair.

View or download the 
for more details about participating companies and schools.

American Mathematical Society
Research Experience for Undergraduates summer programs

If graduate school could be in your future, check out the American Mathematical Society’s Research Experience for Undergraduates summer programs.  This program provides opportunities working with a variety of ongoing research projects with experienced university researchers.

Miami University of Ohio is accepting applications through March 1 for its Summer Undergraduate Mathematical Sciences Research Institute.

A number of other opportunities are out that at universities all across the U.S.   Most offer a stipend, along with rewarding experience.

Ashland University Career Services

Even if you can’t attend this Wednesday’s event, be sure to check for summer internship and job opportunities with AU Career Services.   AU Career Connect, NEOIntern and great tools are available to all Ashland University students and alumni. Visit their homepage for more information. 

Monday, February 3, 2014

Integrated Math Programs Receive National Recognition

The Ashland University Integrated Mathematics program recently received National Recognition by NCATE (National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education). The Integrated Mathematics program prepares students to teach mathematics in grades 7-12. Both the undergraduate and bachelor’s plus programs of integrated mathematics were approved for this distinction.

The NCATE accreditation process for mathematics teacher preparation programs requires a review of the institution’s programs by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM). To receive national recognition, the program must demonstrate that it meets at least 80% of the professional standards and indicators used by the review board. Institutions must provide evidence that teacher candidates know their subject and how to teach it effectively. The NCTM reviewed the curriculum, teaching methods, use of technology, and student’s knowledge and skills before making their decisions.

Because of the rigorous standards used by NCATE, teacher candidates who graduate from NCATE-accredited schools will be better prepared for initial licensing and advanced board certification. Learn more about NCATE.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Drop-In Tutoring available for Math and Computer Science courses

Ashland University’s Center for Academic Support provides tutors and other tools to help students succeed.  Drop-in tutoring is available for many of the courses students tend to struggle with, including math and computer science classes.

Drop-in tutoring sessions for Math are available in Kettering Science Center, room 219 for all 100 and 200 level math courses. Drop-in tutoring for Computer Science 121 and 122 is available in Patterson Hall, room 211. Times are listed below.

Visit the Center for Academic Success for a complete list of all tutoring services available to AU students. Don’t forget to ask your instructor for help too!

Computer Science Drop-in Tutoring
Sessions held in Patterson Hall Room 211.

CS 121 and 122 - Computer Programming
3-4:30 p.m. every Wednesday & Thursday

Math Drop-in Tutoring 
Sessions held in Kettering Science Center, Room 219.

Math 111 PreCalculus
7-8:30 p.m. every Tuesday

Math 202 Calculus with Applications
7-8:30 p.m. every Wednesday

Math 206 Calculus
1-3:00 p.m. every Tuesday
7-8:00 p.m. Thursday
7-8:30 p.m. every Monday & Wednesday

Math 208 Elementary Statistics
2-4:00 p.m. every Wednesday
7-8:30 p.m. every Monday, Wednesday & Thursday

Math 217 – Theory of Arithmetic & Geometry
7-8:30 p.m. every Monday & Thursday

Math 218 – Geometry for Middle grades
7-8:30 p.m. every Tuesday

Math 224 – Discrete Math II
3-5:00 p.m. every Tuesday
8-9:00 p.m. every Thursday

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

AU to Host Hour of Coding Event for High Schoolers

The AU Math and Computer Science Department will host an Hour of Coding event for Ashland High School students on Sunday January 26, between 2 and 4 p.m.  University faculty and students will be on hand to help out as needed. 

Anyone can complete one of the tutorials at  They are made for beginners, so don't be shy. More than 22,000,000 students have already done an hour of coding! is a non-profit dedicated to expanding participation in computer science. Their vision is that every student in every school should have the opportunity to learn computer programming. Find out more at logo used by permission. Want to wear it

Friday, January 10, 2014

Undergraduate Research Opportunities

 The deadline to submit abstracts for the College Undergraduate Research and Creative Activities (URCA) Symposium is January 17.  Information on this and other opportunities for undergrad research follows.

Richard A. Good Endowment for Undergraduate Research Support. 
Any Ashland University Mathematics and Computer Science department majors may apply for these funds.  The purpose of the endowment is to provide educational opportunities for students involved in undergraduate mathematics research projects.  Funds can provide stipend support, travel for conferences, materials for presentations, and will be designated at the discretion of the Dean of Arts and Sciences. You must identify and contact a "faculty sponsor" to apply.   If you are interested, please contact any department faculty member to discuss your project and fill out an application. 

The 5th annual Undergraduate Research & Creative Activity Symposium will be April 1, 2014. This annual event gives undergraduate students a chance to share research, scholarly and creative endeavors. All students who are declared majors in a program within the College of Arts and Sciences are encouraged to participate in this year’s symposium.  Presenters may choose to give an oral presentation, poster presentation, exhibition, or performance.  All presentations should have a significant research or creative component; examples include, but are not limited to summer research conducted at Ashland University or elsewhere, results of independent study projects, thesis work, literary readings or analysis, musical or theatrical performances, and exhibitions of artwork.  The deadline for submitting abstracts is 5:00 p.m. on January 17, 2014.  More details.

Amgen Scholars Program celebrates scientific inquiry by providing undergraduates with faculty-mentored summer research opportunities in science and engineering fields, including statistics.  Summer 2014 will mark the eighth year of this exciting initiative.  Applications for the ten U.S. host universities are now online.  The application close date is February 3, 2014.   Eligibility requirements, as well as site-specific programming information, is available via  For more information contact: Michael Bergren, Director, Amgen Scholars U.S. Program Office.

2013 Department news available

During winter break, the department sent out the 2013 Math & Computer Science 2013 newsletter.  Click here to read the fall 2013 newsletter for the Ashland University Mathematics & Computer Science Department.  

In it you'll find information about student activities such as internships, contests and awards.  Who knows what familiar faces you will encounter!  You can also read news about our faculty, including a feature story about Dr. Tom Dence who will retire this spring after 30 years with AU.  

Additional news is posted on the math and computer science department page throughout the year. You can even sign up to receive new postings by email on the department blog site.