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“Maths Camp” inspires 2016 top achievers

A group of 17 young mathematicians attended a Maths Camp was held at UJ’s Auckland Park Kingsway Campus in February.

They scored distinctions in their first-year Mathematical Sciences modules in 2016 and were invited to attend the Maths Camp, hosted by the Department of Pure and Applied Mathematics, and coordinated by Dr Andrew Craig, a lecturer in the Department.

The three-day programme included talks from various researchers in the department as well as problem-solving exercises aimed at stimulating the top achievers to consider majoring in mathematics and stay on for Honours after completing their Bachelor of Science degrees.

The students were welcomed by Pure and Applied Mathematics HoD, Prof Willem Conradie, motivated by esteemed UJ graph theorist, Prof Peter Dankelmann, and enjoyed olympiad-type questions presented by Best BSc Honours student in the Faculty of Science for 2014, Mr Cheick Kader Touré.

Dr Craig and Mr Sonwabile Mafunda, a fellow young lecturer in the Department, said there were limitless career opportunities for mathematicians and agreed that problem solving was the “fun part” of mathematics.

Dr Jules Mba introduced the students to research topics in algebra while Dr Wilmari Morton spoke to them about partially ordered sets and lattices. “The camp concluded with a session Mr Mafunda on the mathematics behind cryptography”.

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