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Spring 2014 - A Column from the Student Activities Coordinator

  • The Student Activities Workshop is tentatively scheduled for the morning of Saturday, April 5th, during the IN-MAA Spring Meeting. The workshop will be organized by Prof. Josh Holden of the Rose-Hulman Institutute of Technology and is tentatively titled, An Interactive Tour of Public Key Cryptography (and of Number Theory). A preliminary abstract is included below:

    Like other branches of mathematics, number theory has seen many surprising developments in the last 50 years. One of the most surprising is the fact that number theory, long considered the most "useless" of any field of mathematics, has become vital to the development of modern codes and ciphers. We will take a hands-on tour of some of these ciphers, focusing on the "public key" ciphers --- ciphers which answer the question "Can two persons who have never had a secret in common, by a public discussion agree upon a common secret?" (Beutelspacher) For perhaps the first time in history, the answer is yes in practical terms. The ideas are very easy to understand, and yet underlie large portions of both modern number theory and modern cryptography.
  • The Indiana Collegiate Mathematics Competition (ICMC) will take place during the afternoon of Friday, April 4th, at the beginning of the IN-MAA Spring Meeting. Undergraduates are encouraged to attend. In addition to the fun of the exam, there will also be details about getting your solutions published by the IN-MAA!
  • Undergraduates and graduate students are invited to contribute talks at the IN-MAA Spring Meeting. All student speakers will be awarded a $25 gift certificate good at the IN-MAA book sale.
  • New this year: one of the parallel sessions of contributed talks will be a Special Session on Analysis for graduate students and recent PhDs. Titles and abstracts can be submitted on-line by March 14.

Prof. Justin Gash
Franklin College
Student Activities Coordinator for Indiana MAA
jgash (at)


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