Colloquium Series

Keep an eye on this space for new colloquia.

Recent Colloquia

Math Colloquia Series, Celebrating Women in Mathematics 

March 8 – Katherine Urabe, M.A. (Kansas State University and U.S. Army Research and Analysis Center)

        ED 140 between 11:00-12:00 pm

Colloquium Title: Using Mathematical Modeling and Data Analysis to Shape the Future

Abstract: Interested in applying your STEM degree to solve real world problems? Do you want to make a global impact while informing multi-billion dollar decisions? We will discuss internship and career opportunities at The U.S. Army Research and Analysis Center (TRAC), what working for the Department of Defense is like as a civilian, and how we use math in our studies. We will do a deep dive into how optimization, network flows, and algorithms were used in the Future Vertical Lift study to determine what the helicopters of the future should look like.

Biography: Katie Urabe holds Bachelor's Degrees in Mathematics and Linguistics from Fresno State, where she was the 2012 President’s Medalist. She received her Master's Degree in Mathematics from Fresno State in 2014. After graduation, she taught math at the local community colleges, then went into educational publishing as a math curriculum expert for DataWorks Educational Research and Edmentum. In 2016, Katie became an operations research analyst for the Department of Defense in Kansas City. She has worked on military studies using optimization, graph theory, and statistics. Her most notable achievement was a study on the creation and implementation of a Soldier Credentialing program that was presented to Congress and recently passed legislation. In 2018, Katie was nominated for the Barchi Prize for her work on Future Megacities. She is currently pursuing a Master's Degree in Operations Research from Kansas State University and a Data Science Certificate from the Naval Postgraduate School.


March 15 – Candice Price, Ph.D. (University of San Diego)

        PB 194 between 11:00-12:00 pm

Colloquium Title: The Tangle Model: An Application of Topology to Biology

Abstract: The tangle model was developed in the 1980s by professors DeWitt Sumner and Claus Ernst. This model uses the mathematics of tangles to model protein-DNA binding. An N-string tangle is a pair (B,t) where B is a 3-dimensional ball and t is a collection of N non-intersecting curves properly embedded in B. N-string tangles are formed by placing 2N points on the boundary of B, and attaching N non-intersecting curves inside B. Tangles, like knots and links, are studied through their diagrams. In the tangle model for DNA site-specific recombination, one is required to solve simultaneous equations for unknown tangles which are summands of observed DNA knots and links. This discussion will give a review of the tangle model including definitions.

Biography: Candice Renee Price is an African-American mathematician and assistant professor at the University of San Diego. Born and raised in California, Candice has a bachelor’s degree (2003) in Mathematics from California State University, Chico and a master's degree (2007) from San Francisco State University. She earned her doctoral degree (2012) in mathematics from the University of Iowa under the advisement of Isabel Darcy. Her area of mathematical research is DNA topology, that is, knot theory applied to the structure of DNA. She is an advocate for greater representation of women and people of color in the STEM fields.


March 22 – Jessica de Silva, Ph.D. (CSU Stanislaus)

        PB 194 between 11:00-12:00 pm

Title:  A Graph Theorist’s Perspective on the Card Game SET

Abstract: In mathematics, some of the best puzzles challenge us to take something we know well (e.g., graph theory) and try to find a way to relate it to something new and interesting (e.g., SET). SET is a card game played with a deck in which each card has four properties and each property takes on one of three values. Players compete to quickly find sets of three cards such that, with respect to each property, the cards have all the same or all different values. We will explore one way to look at SET from a graph theoretic point of view, opening doors to many interesting questions and generalizations.

Biography: Jessica De Silva is an Assistant Professor of Mathematics at CSU Stanislaus. A Central Valley native, Jessica grew up in the small town of Hilmar, CA where the population of cows exceeds that of the people. She received her BA in Mathematics from CSU Stanislaus and then traveled half-way across the country to the University of Nebraska-Lincoln to pursue her Ph.D. in Mathematics. After 5 years in “Cornhusker Nation”, she is happy to be back home working with students who remind her of herself. As an undergraduate, Jessica benefited greatly from programs and conferences that supported women in their mathematical endeavors. In her current role, she is excited to give back by organizing conferences which celebrate the achievements of women in mathematics.


If you need a disability-related accommodation or wheelchair access information, please contact the Mathematics Department at 559.278.2992 or e-mail Requests should be made at least one week in advance of the event. 

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