The following is an edited version of an end-of-year summary report sent to the SIAM.
SIAM and Math Club have established three core pillars upon which to form themselves within the Department of Mathematical and Statistical Sciences at CU Denver:
- scholarship, and
- community engagement.
In addressing service, we have regularly facilitated participation in regional science fairs, organized a semesterly food bank drive to benefit homeless students on campus (Note: our department was the most successful donor on campus last semester), and have begun to integrate charitable fundraising into our community events.
To enrich the sense of belonging that escapes many students on a commuter campus, the Math Club has put on a whole host of exciting and engaging events with the aim of reaching students across the campus. These events usually include some educational component, but the overall purpose is to give all students an outlet to explore new ideas and make mathematics more approachable.
In April 2017, the two clubs collaborated on a large-scale interactive event designed around the interconnections between art and mathematics during which students were able to enjoy food, learn about the prevalence of mathematics in art (and vice versa), and make their own works to take home with them.
The department’s semesterly two-day study hall preceding final examinations has seen increased attendance under the recent club leadership.
In addition to this, SIAM has provided the educational aspects and resources necessary for effective outreach while organizing student-led seminars and panels on research, career, and graduate school opportunities.
Furthermore, the club has run a student conference on campus for thirteen consecutive years that unites several local universities and provides a forum for students to hone their presentation skills and connect with their peers.
Thousands of dollars have been secured for the event from the CU Denver Student Government Association, allowing students to finally attend free of cost while simultaneously improving the quality of resources and catering.
Finally, the club has started to facilitate a catered Mentor Lunch each semester for undergraduates to receive personalized academic guidance and advising to help navigate their degree requirements and expose them to potentially overlooked courses, careers, or research opportunities.