[ MAA Logo ]Illinois Section of the MAA

The 2007 Annual Meeting of the Illinois Section of the MAA

The Annual Business Meeting
The Student Math Contest


Cup Presentation
MAA President Joe Gallian
Scott Harrod receives the Section's Distinguished Service Award
Jean Pedersen on The Role of Paper-Folding in Number-Theory
Joan Hutchinson on Art Gallery Theorems
Olcay Akman on A Biologist, a Mathematician and a Statistician Walked Into a Bar…
Dennis Schneider receives the Section's Distinguished Teaching Award
Tim Comar "Bringing Life (Sciences) to Calculus Courses"



The Eighty Sixth Annual Meeting of the Illinois Section of the Mathematical Association of America will take place on the campus of  Western Illinois University in Macomb, Illinois on March 30 and 31, 2007.  This meeting is partially funded by NSF grant DMS-0536991 through the MAA Regional Undergraduate Mathematics Conferences program.  This enables us to provide travel support for some undergraduate participants.

The meeting includes a banquet on Friday evening with a talk by MAA President Joseph Gallian (University of Minnesota-Duluth).  Other plenary speakers are Jean Pedersen (Santa Clara University), Joan Hutchinson (Macalester College), and Olcay Ackman (Illinois State University).  Contributed papers (including those presented by undergraduate students) are solicited.

There will be a workshop on Bio-Mathematics comprised of two independent sessions --- one pre-conference, on the morning of Friday, March 30, and the other post-conference, on the afternoon of Saturday, March 31.

The Mathematics Department at Western Illinois is sponsoring a conference for K-16 mathematics teachers the morning of March 30, before the ISMAA meeting begins.

The ISMAA Annual meeting is open to both members and non-members of the Mathematical Association of America.

Meeting Links

Meeting Schedule and Abstracts

Student Math Contest

Conference Workshop on Biomathematics Education

Registration Information

Schedule of Plenary Speakers

Lodging, Transportation, and Parking

Project NExT Announcement

Final Meeting Notes

(Event Locations, Wireless Access)

There will be a reception on Thursday evening March 29 from 7:00-9:00pm, for all conference attendees who are in town by then, held at the President's House, 1100 Wigwam Hollow Road. The President's house is located roughly under the "t" in "Mapquest" at the upper left of the Macomb map. Take University Drive west from Morgan Hall to Wigwam Hollow Road and turn right. The house is on the right about a mile up Wigwam Hollow Road.

The student pizza party and the banquet will be held in the University Union. The Union's location is at the "0" on the Macomb map or just south of the stadium on the detailed campus map.

All other events for the meeting will be in Morgan Hall, beginning with registration on the second floor. Morgan Hall is northwest of the stadium on the detailed campus map. or under the "00" on the Macomb map. There should be wireless access available from the registration, vendor, and hospitality areas as well as other rooms on the second floor of Morgan Hall.

Meeting Schedule

The Meeting Schedule and the Abstracts are located here as pdf files. The specific student speaker schedule and abstracts will be available at the registration desk.

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Student Math Contest

You have a deck of 10 cards and on each card there is a single digit between 0 and 9, inclusive.  The digit on the top card equals the number of cards which have a zero on them, and so forth until the digit on the last card is the number of cards with a nine on them. What are the digits, in order from top to bottom, on the cards?

Is this the sort of  problem that intrigues you?  Then you should consider competing in our Eleventh Annual Student Mathematics Contest which will be held on the afternoon of Friday March 30, 2007 during the Annual Meeting of the Illinois Section of the MAA at Western Illinois University in Macomb, Illinois. The Contest is likely to have a minimum of four problems for the teams to consider. A team from a particular college is to consist of up to 3 undergraduate students. A college or university may enter more than one team. Team members may work together in solving the problems and will submit one team solution for each. Electronic computational devices (and slide rules and log tables and abacii) are not allowed. Competitors receive preference  for a Travel Grant for the ISMAA meeting and will have their conference registration fee waived.

For more samples of the kinds of problems to expect, see the problems from past contests. (You might also look at the Challenge of the Week problems from the Department of Mathematics at Eastern Illinois University.)

Teams need not register until the day of the Contest, but if you intend to participate in the contest, it would be helpful if you would inform Peter Andrews at pgandrews@eiu.edu.

The participating teams will receive the results of the contest as soon as they become available. The Contest results will also be posted on the ISMAA website.

For additional information on the contest, please contact Peter Andrews at the above address.

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Conference Workshop on Biomathematics Education

The workshop at this year’s meeting will be on Bio-Mathematics and conducted by Tim Comar of Benedictine University.  There will be two, independent sessions:  one from 9:30 AM until noon on Friday, March 30 (followed by lunch for workshop participants) and the other from 1:30PM to 3:00PM on Saturday, March 31.

 Conference Workshop

Bringing Life (Sciences) to Calculus Courses

Timothy D. Comar

Department of Mathematics, Benedictine University

Part I:  Friday, March 30, 2007, 9:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. (including lunch to follow)

Part II:  Saturday, March 31, 2007, 1:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.

This year, the workshop will consist of two sessions.  The first session will be held on the morning of Friday, March 30, 2007 prior to the beginning of the ISMAA Annual Meeting.  The second session will be held immediately following the conclusion of the ISMAA Annual Meeting during the afternoon of Saturday, March 31, 2007.  It is recommended that participants participate in both sessions, but it will possible to register for either session separately.  Registration for this workshop is open to all ISMAA Annual Meeting Attendees and is part of the ISMAA Project NExT Program.

Reports including BIO 2010: Transforming Undergraduate Education for Future Research Biologists (National Research Council, 2003) and Math and BIO 2010 (L. A. Steen, ed., MAA, 2005) emphasize that aspects of biological research are becoming more quantitative and that there is a need to introduce future life science researchers to a greater array of mathematical and computational techniques and more sophisticated mathematical reasoning. Biocalculus (calculus for the life sciences) courses can provide an effective way to introduce lower level undergraduates majoring in the life sciences to significant applications of mathematics to biology.  This workshop is designed to help mathematicians at both four-year and two-year institutions design and implement biocalculus courses and integrate biological applications into existing calculus courses.  The format of the workshop is a combination of lectures and hands-on computer laboratory activities.  Participants will be introduced to different biocalculus course structures and the issues related to implementing such courses.  Participants will also learn ways to develop collaborations with biologists to best integrate mathematics and biology into their existing calculus courses.  No previous experience with biology or biomathematics is required. Questions about this workshop should be directed to Tim Comar at tcomar@ben.edu or 630-829-6555.

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Registration Information

Workshop on Bio-Mathematics:  $15 (Registration Deadline March 16)

There will be two sessions, Friday, March 30 9:30-noon and Saturday, March 31 1:30-3:00.  These sessions will be independent of one another.  The registration fee covers  one, the other, or both and includes lunch on Friday.

Conference Registration: On-site registration is available for $25 (pre-registration is now closed).

Student registration $10 (waived for students presenting papers or competing in the student

Registration fee for retirees is $10

Registration is waived for first year MAA members and for 2006 and 2007  ISMAA Section NExT fellows

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Plenary Speaker Schedule

Friday, March 30, 2007

Opening Talk (2:30PM-3:30PM)

The Role of Paper-Folding in Number-Theory

Jean Pedersen, University of Santa Clara

This talk will present joint work with Peter Hilton and Byron Walden involving a theorem that grew out of paper-folding.  It is an easily understood theorem and the audience will be left with several open questions concerning the theorem.  I will also describe, display, and if there is time, take apart (or collapse) polyhedral models that were constructed from the folded paper.

Banquet Talk (After dinner, approximately 8:00PM)

Using Groups and Graphs to Create Symmetry Patterns

Joseph Gallian, University of Minnesota, Duluth

We use video animations to explain how Hamiltonian paths, spanning trees, cosets in groups, and factor groups can be used to create computer generated symmetry patterns in hyperbolic and Euclidean planes. These methods were used to create the image for the 2003 Mathematics Awareness Month poster.

Saturday, March 31, 2007

Opening Talk (8:30AM-9:30AM)

Art Gallery Theorems

Joan Hutchinson, Macalester College

Victor Klee posed the question about whether an art gallery with n exterior walls can always be guarded by floor(n/3) guards. This problem was solved in the affirmative by V. Chvatal and later and more simply by S.Fisk; the latter's elegant proof is included in Aigner and Ziegler's Proofs from The Book. The assumptions are that the art gallery is formed from a polygon with n sides with no interior walls. The art gallery is guarded if for every point in the interior of the polygon there is a guard such that the straight-line segment joining the point and the guard lies in the polygon's interior. But who ever heard of an art gallery without interior walls? And what happens when the gallery (polygon) has the more usual right angles between walls?

We will discuss these questions and answers, which use graph-coloring results, and mention an application of this theory that appeared in the CBS TV program "Numb3rs" in October, 2005.

Closing Talk (12:00PM-1:00PM)

Olcay Akman, Illinois State University

A Biologist, a Mathematician and a Statistician Walked Into a Bar…

Statistical modeling that uses neural network methodology is rapidly growing in a wide variety of areas such as biological modeling problems, data mining applications, business forecasting, risk management, and engineering, among others. In this talk we will introduce the prediction and classification properties of neural network modeling with an application to Florida populations of lubber grasshoppers (Romalea microptera). 

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Transportation and Lodging

Lodging Update

Believe it or not, Macomb is out of motel space on Friday evening! It turns out the Mid-America Paleontology Society is having its annual Fossil Expo at WIU the same time ISMAA is on campus. To help those of you who might have left things a little too long, there is some lodging still available (with no comments or recommendations) about 30-40 miles north, south, east and west of Macomb. Here are some motels which, as of noon on Thursday, March 22, had vacancies:

To the North, in Monmouth:

Hawthorne Inn & Suites 1200 W. Broadway Monmouth IL 800-527-1133

Super 8 Motel 1122 N 6th Monmouth IL 309-734-8558

To the South, in Rushville:

Green Gables Motel 645 W. Lafayette Rushville IL 217 322-4371

Crossroads Motel Junction of Rte. 24 and Rte. 67 Rushville IL 217 322-3369

To the East, in Havana:

Red Lion Motor Lodge 1020 E Laurel Ave Havana IL 309-543-4407

Sycamore Motor Lodge 371 E Dearborn St Havana IL 309-543-4454

To the West, in Carthage:

Prairie Winds Motel 1746 E Highway 136 Carthage IL 217-357-3101

Carthage Town House Motel 160 Prairie Ave Carthage IL 217-357-3118


Amtrak’s “Carl Sandburg”  and “Illinois Zephyr” trains provide daily service between Chicago and Quincy with both trains stopping in Macomb.

Directions to Western and information about lodging in Macomb is available from Western’s web pages.


If you are staying at the University Union you will get a parking pass for their lot. Friday during the day, you should not be ticketed if you park in Q Lot --- north of the stadium on the detailed campus map. Saturday you should be able to park pretty much anywhere you can find a spot.

For additional information on the program, please contact the program committee or:

Peter Andrews
Mathematics Department
Eastern Illinois University
Charleston, Illinois 61920
(217) 581-6275

The Eighty Seventh Annual Meeting of the Illinois Section of the Mathematical Association of America will take place on the campus of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois on April 4 and 5, 2008. MAA members and nonmembers are welcome to participate. Information or comments to/from the Program Committee. Paul Mccombs will chair the conference.

March 25, 2007

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