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SU Department of Mathematics Receives Prestigious NSF Grant

June 4, 2008

SELINSGROVE, (Pa.) – Susquehanna University's Department of Mathematics has received a Research Experience for Undergraduates grant (REU) from the National Science Foundation.

The REU grant will allow three Susquehanna mathematics professors – Lisa Orloff Clark, Alex Wilce and Jeff Graham – to work with nine undergraduates over the next three summers in an intensive course of study and a guided research program in quantum information theory.

Quantum information theory (QIT) is an exciting and very rapidly expanding area of mathematical physics, with important links to both pure mathematics and theoretical computer science. The summer research projects have the potential to support both tangible practical applications and deep insights into the nature of quantum theory itself.

The number of NSF grants for REU programs in mathematics is limited and demand for them is high. Consequently, these programs are extremely selective and include only the best and brightest undergraduates from around the country. Susquehanna students participating in this summer's program are Catarina Manney of Elysburg, Pa.; Casey Oliver of State College, Pa.; and Daniel Mease of Port Trevorton, Pa. They will join students from Grinnell College in Grinnell, Iowa; Haverford College and West Chester University near Philadelphia; Harvey Mudd College in Claremont, Calif.; Boston University; and Lewis and Clark College in Portland, Ore.

Underscoring the importance of the grant, some of the leading researchers in the field of quantum information theory will visit the Susquehanna campus as part of the program. Confirmed guests include Howard Barnum of Los Alamos National Laboratory, Christopher Fuchs of The Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics, Michael Frey of Bucknell University, Mike Westmoreland of Denison University and Ben Schumacher of Kenyon College.

“We have been given a great opportunity with this grant to put Susquehanna's mathematical sciences department on the map,” said Lisa Orloff Clark. “Not only are math departments all over the country paying attention to what REU programs are being offered, but also the Quantum Information Theory community is excited about what we are doing here. The team we've put together for this summer is impressive, and I am anxious to see what we can do!”

Contact: Gerald Cohen
570-372-4119

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