Faculty earn NSF funding to support graduate students, postdocs

Photo Credit: Eloísa Grifo, Brian Harbourne, Jack Jeffries, Tom Marley, Alexandra Seceleanu, and Mark Walker
Tue, 05/21/2024 - 00:00

Eloísa Grifo, Brian Harbourne, Jack Jeffries, Tom Marley, Alexandra Seceleanu, and Mark Walker have earned Research Training Groups (RTG) funding from the National Science Foundation to support graduate students and postdocs in commutative algebra.

The RTG program aims to strengthen the nation's scientific competitiveness by increasing the number of well-prepared U.S. citizens, nationals, and permanent residents who pursue careers in the mathematical sciences. Efforts to improve graduate student research training and professional development through structured groups pursuing collaborative research are supported.

The project, called "The RTG in Commutative Algebra at Nebraska," will use the funding—over $1.7M—to establish activities for researchers ranging from undergraduate students to faculty. Graduate students and postdoctoral scholars can jumpstart their research programs and develop broad skills as professionals, and undergraduates can cement their interest and confidence in mathematics. This training will also increase participation of first-generation and Hispanic students and enhance the competitiveness of junior researchers in algebra overall.

All of the faculty members are part of the Department of Mathematics and the Commutative Algebra and Algebraic Geometry research group.

Training activities supported by this grant include a first-year Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) for first-generation college students, an international REU run in partnership with Centro de Investigación en Matemáticas in Guanajuato, Mexico, and a professional development workshop for early-career algebraists throughout the US.

This grant will also create three postdoctoral positions and support numerous graduate students.

The University of Nebraska-Lincoln has a decades-long reputation as an international center for commutative algebra. The research group has made significant advances in many topics of current interest, and this grant will propel further advances in these areas by increasing the participation of postdocs and graduate students.

This project is jointly funded by the NSF's Algebra and Number Theory Program and the Established Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR).