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He worked under the guidance of Evan Fisher, professor of mathematics

Mathematics major Shiliang Cui ’09 (Shanghai, China) will present his research at the 2009 Joint Mathematics Meetings being held Jan. 5 – 8 in Washington, D.C. He will participate in the Special Session on Research in Mathematics by Undergraduates.

Incorporating the primary national mathematical associations, the annual conference aims to preserve, supplement, and utilize research of mathematicians from around the world for the purpose of advancing mathematical achievement, encouraging research, and providing the communication necessary to progress in the field.

Based on EXCEL research conducted under the guidance of Evan Fisher, professor of mathematics, Cui’s research explores the probability model known as the Markov chain, which means, “given the present state, future states are independent of the past states.”

Cui explains, “Given a sequence of Markov dependent experiments, our research studies the expected waiting time for the first occurrence of a specified finite sequence of outcomes. There have been a lot of studies on this topic over decades, but our approach by a martingale argument provides a new perspective on these existing studies under the Markov assumption.”

“Undergraduate research is the best part of my educational experience at Lafayette,” says Cui. “Having a chance to present our findings at the annual national mathematics meeting this January will be a great honor and a spectacular experience for me. I will be given a chance to see some of the most current research in the field of mathematics. By attending this meeting, I will also get a better idea of all the different areas of mathematics available to pursue in graduate studies.”

  • Mathematics
  • EXCEL/Undergraduate Research
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