Carroll has one of the most state-of-the art mathematics programs in the country. Affiliations with West Point and Harvey Mudd College via Project InterMath have led to a unique approach to teaching and integrating mathematical topics.
Concepts are threaded together in and between classes so that students have a deeper understanding of how different branches of mathematics are intertwined. Working individually and in groups, students are challenged to apply their knowledge to solve real world problems. In order to develop expertise in an area of applied mathematics, Carroll math majors take courses to complete a cognate concentration in a field of interest.
Students can select from biology, business and economics, chemistry, computer science, engineering, environmental science, secondary education, or work with their advisor to develop a plan unique to their interests.
The Mathematical Contest in Modeling (MCM) and its sister contest, the Interdisciplinary Contest in Modeling (ICM), provide great opportunities for students to focus on problem solving skills in a real-world environment. Problems come from research areas of applied mathematics related to many fields – business, environmental sciences, and sports are a few examples. Student teams are given 96 hours to analyze a single open ended problem, develop a model of the problem, solve the model, and write a report. Carroll’s faculty meet with student teams weekly in the months before the competition to help them prepare for the unique nature of this international contest.
Carroll has had three teams awarded the contest's highest ranking: In 2003, Carroll's ICM team of Kylan Johnson, Gary Olson, and Joe Rasca was awarded an Outstanding Winner ranking. In 2006, Carroll's MCM team of Ben Dunham, Kyle Nixon, and Steffan Francischetti was awarded an Outstanding Winner ranking, placing them in the elite company of Cal Tech, Harvey Mudd, MIT, and Harvard. In 2010, the MCM team of Brittany Harris, Chase Peaslee, and Kyle Perkins were one of 4 Outstanding teams along with Beijing Jiaotong University, Hangzhou Dianzi University, and Lawrence University.
For more information on this contest, see the Carroll MCM-ICM website.
Many students view the experience as a highlight of their academic tenure at Carroll. Faculty member Dr. John Scharf regularly serves as a final judge for the competition.
“In teaching our students, we strive to help them see mathematics as a continuum of topics, emphasizing the interwoven nature of the discipline. Our classes are designed to build a strong foundation, using technology and projects to enhance students' understanding. We consistently tie together theory and application - real world issues where students must first define the problem and then develop strategies for solving it. Our students leave Carroll with a wealth of experience to contribute to their work or research teams. ”
How can we optimize delivery of humanitarian supplies during a crisis? How do we route snowplows during a storm to minimize the storm's impact? If you are interested in questions such as these, consider the Operations Research track. Operations research uses mathematical modeling to provide quantitative input to decisions.
Analytics, a digital magazine published by the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Science (INFORMS), provides readers with real-life examples of how data, modeling and mathematical analysis is used to drive better business decisions and provide concrete competitive advantage.
“I was well prepared for graduate studies. My Carroll courses gave me a very strong base in mathematics and computers, along with engineering classes. A lot of students in graduate school seem to have very particular backgrounds and they struggle more. In general, I have a broad background in lots of different things.”
Chris Gossard, Carroll class of ’98 (Mathematics), who recently completed her Ph.D. (Civil Engineering) from the University of Oklahoma.
Our newest concentration in the mathematics program is in actuarial science. Actuaries use mathematical models to help make decisions about investments and insurance. This is an exciting and rewarding career choice in a field that is rapidly growing. We currently have 2 students interning at local firms, and the Society of Actuaries just approved our course work in support of Applied Statistical Methods. For more information about this career path, visit BeAnActuary.org.
College mathematics faculty, headed by Dr. Kelly Cline and Dr. Holly Zullo, has been awarded a $180,000 grant from the National Science Foundation for a three year project (2010-2012) in order bring together a team, including 5 other faculty from colleges across the country, to study the use of classroom voting in mathematics and to develop curricular materials. Classroom voting and clickers have been popular in Carroll mathematics courses for the past 6 years.
If you are taking one of the following math or chemistry classes, you will need one of the calculators listed below. If you have any questions about substitutions, please contact your instructor or Dr. Mark Parker (Math Professor) at email@example.com
Contact Dr. Kelly Cline 406-447-4451 (firstname.lastname@example.org) today to learn more about mathematics at Carroll College.
A degree in Math from Carroll can lead to a variety of careers, which may or may not use math specifically but will require the ability to reason carefully and problem solve. Some of the careers our math majors have found themselves in include:
Did you know that in three of the last seven years, Carroll College has had teams rated Outstanding Winner in the international Mathematical Contest in Modeling, placing them in the elite company of other school such as Harvey-Mudd, Harvard, MIT, and Duke which also have had winning teams.
For each of the last seven years, Carroll has had at least one team rated Meritorious Winner, placing them in the top 13% of the world.
By Eddie Gregg, Helena IR
Helena native and Carroll graduate Emily Speranza is breaking the mold with her math and biology double major by pursuing a doctoral degree in a field she says is dominated by men.
In the fall, she is starting a fellowship, which includes full tuition and a stipend, at Boston University, where she will peruse a doctoral degree in a field called bioinformatics.
“It’s computational biology,” she said on a recent afternoon in Helena. She explained the field involves doing a lot of programming for data analysis, data mining and “basically doing biology on a computer.”
She says she is just one of two female first-year students enrolled in the program.
“Math and engineering tends to be completely male dominated,” she said. “Actually, at Carroll we’re really lucky we have a female math professor who brings in a lot of girls, so I think this year we have a more girls graduating than guys, which is really not the norm. Females tend to stick more to the biology and social sciences in general.”
Eventually, she says, she would like to work for the National Institute of Health or a similar government group doing lab work. Read more of this story