UVic wins bid to host CUMC 2016

The Canadian Undergraduate Math Conference will be hosted at UVic July 13-17, 2016 for the first time in its over 20 year history. This conference brings undergraduate math students from across the country together in a way that no other event does. Says organizer and fourth year math student, Chloe Lampman, “The conference is really one of a kind in Canada in that it is devoted solely to sharing undergraduate research in a cooperative, non-competitive and fun atmosphere.”

Lampman, president of the CUMC 2016 organizing committee, championed the bid to have the conference at UVic. She believes strongly in encouraging more participation and collaboration amongst undergraduate math students. Last year, along with some other students, she re-formed the Math and Stats course union – called SUMS (Students in Undergraduate Mathematics and Statistics).

Lampman hopes that CUMC 2016 will provide another venue for math students at UVic to bond and share their research. Says Lampman, “The CUMC has a powerful legacy of bringing students with a common passion together. Our vision is to continue this tradition, with an emphasis on celebrating diversity at the conference as well. We want there to be something for everyone and plan to accomplish this by ensuring that keynote speakers represent a broad range of topics in both pure and applied math; by encouraging student speakers to tackle topics of all kinds in English and French; and by hosting an evening celebrating gender diversity in math.”

Lampman attended and presented at the 2015 CUMC conference, hosted at the University of Alberta this past June. The bidding process started right afterwards and involved preparing a poster and written application. Bids from all universities were posted on the CMS website where undergraduate students from across Canada could vote on them. While the final decision was in the CMS’s hands, peer support played a big role in their decision.

The application process also involved getting the administrative and academic support of the department, which will be integral to the conference’s success. Fortunately, Lampman has a strong supporter in department chair, Dr. Rod Edwards who says, “The Department of Mathematics and Statistics is thrilled that our undergraduate students are bringing the CUMC to UVic next year. This shows that we have a core of enthusiastic and engaged undergraduate students in Mathematics and Statistics at UVic. Hosting the CUMC will help students here and from across the country to strengthen their experience of the mathematical community.”

Written by Angelica Pass for ScienceMatters Fall 2015 Vol. 9 No. 2.