The AWM Distinguished Colloquium series is being established in Spring 2021 in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Association for Women in Mathematics. The series will comprise three colloquium talks this spring and will continue thereafter with one colloquium per semester.

Spring 2021

Stafflani AWM PosterClick To ZoomSpeaker: Gigiliola Staffilani (MIT)
When: Wednesday, February 17, 2021 at 3:00 p.m.
Where: Online Zoom
Abstract:
Waves: Building Blocks inWaves: Building Blocks inNature and in Mathematics

In this talk I will first give a few examples of wave phenomena in nature. Then I willIn this talk I will first give a few examples of wave phenomena in nature. Then I willexplain how, in order to understand these phenomena, mathematicians use toolsfrom many different areas of mathematics, such as Fourier analysis, harmonicanalysis, dynamical systems, number theory, and probability. I will also giveexamples of the beautiful interaction between the “concrete" and the “abstract,” andhow these interactions constantly advance the boundaries of research.

 About the Speaker

Gigliola Staffilani is Abby Rockefeller Mauze Professor of Mathematics at MIT.Gigliola Staffilani is Abby Rockefeller Mauze Professor of Mathematics at MIT.She has previously held positions at the Institute for Advanced Study, Stanford,Harvard, and Brown Universities. She graduated from the Universitá di Bolognain 1989 and obtained her Ph.D. from the University of Chicago in 1995.Staffilani is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, theMassachusetts Academy of Sciences, and the American Mathematical Society.She has held fellowhips from the Sloan, Guggenheim, and Simons foundations.Her research concerns harmonic analysis and partial differential equations,including the Korteweg–de Vries equation and the Schrödinger equation.


Ellenburg11x17IMAGEClick To ZoomSpeaker: Sommer Gentry (US Naval Academy) 
When: Wednesday, March 24, 2021 at 3:00 p.m.
Where: Online
Abstract:
  People who volunteer as living kidney donors are often incompatible with their intended recipients. Kidney paired donation matches one patient and his or her incompatible donor with another pair in the same situation for an exchange. The lifespan of a transplant depends on the immunologic concordance of donor and recipient. We represent the patient-donor pairs with an undirected, edge-weighted graph and formulate the problem in terms of integer programming. I will propose an edge weighting of G which guarantees that every matching with maximum weight also has maximum cardinality, and also maximizes the number of transplants for an exceptional subset of recipients, while favoring immunologic concordance.

About the Speaker

Sommer Gentry is a Professor of Mathematics at the United States Naval Academy, and is also on the faculty of the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. She has a B.S. in Mathematical and Computational Science and an M.S. in Operations Research, both from Stanford University, and a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from MIT. She designed matching optimization methods used for nationwide kidney paired donation registries in both the United States and Canada, and is now redistricting liver sharing boundaries to help reduce geographic disparities in transplantation. Her work has attracted the attention of major media outlets including Time Magazine, Reader’s Digest, Science, the Discovery Channel, and National Public Radio. Gentry has received the MAA’s Henry L. Alder award for distinguished teaching and was named the Naval Academy’s 2021 recipient of the Class of 1951 Civilian Faculty Excellence in Research award.