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Two Math Graduate Students Organize the Texas Women in Mathematics Symposium

Two-Day Event Brought Together 70 Female Mathematicians

In November, the University of Houston hosted the third annual Texas Women in Mathematics Symposium, a two-day event that brought 70 female mathematicians together for networking, talks and professional development.

Duong Nguyen & Kayla Bicol
Duong Nguyen (left) and Kayla Bicol (right) served as co-chairs of the organizing committee.

Organizers for this year’s symposium included mathematics graduate students Kayla Bicol and Duong Nguyen, who served as co-chairs of the organizing committee. Yuliya Gorb, associate professor of mathematics, served as the faculty advisor.

Bicol and Nguyen were inspired to volunteer as organizers after attending the first symposium held in 2016.

“After attending the first symposium, we wanted to bring this to Houston,” Bicol said. “We want to strengthen the network of women mathematicians here in Texas.”

TWIMS offered the opportunity for a regional symposium, cutting down on travel costs while also offering free registration for all participants.

Attendees came from all over Texas, as well as Louisiana, with participants from Sul Ross State University, Texas A&M University, Texas State University, University of Louisiana at Lafayette, and University of Texas at Austin.

Texas Women in Mathematics Symposium
The Texas Women in Mathematics Symposium brought together 70 mathematicians for two days of networking, talks and professional development.

“This is a good opportunity to meet mathematicians outside your university,” Nguyen said.
During the two days, 19 speakers gave talks, including a keynote talk by noted mathematician and former UH faculty Suncica Canic.

New additions to this year’s symposium included workshops on salary negotiation, a panel on different career options, as well as a poster session, where participants were given the opportunity to present their work.

“We had a large number of speakers for whom this was their first time presenting,” Bicol said. “This offered a supportive environment.”

The TWIMS received financial support from the College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, the Department of Mathematics, and the Mathematical Association of America through the Tensor Women and Mathematics Grant.

- Rachel Fairbank, College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics

December 12, 2018