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Spring 2022

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Presidential Dream Courses - Spring 2022

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Archaeology of Migration in America

ANTH 4333

This course will draw from the work of archaeologists to explore the long-term histories of human migration and movement in America. We will investigate why movement has been so critical for our ancestors, the different types of movement, why people migrate, and consider the history of voluntary and forced migrations in our continent’s history.

We will discuss a range of topics from the earliest migrations to America more than 14,000 years ago, how movement was an important strategy for Native peoples here for thousands of years, the history of forced migrations (captives and slaves, the 1830 removal of Native Americans to Oklahoma, internment camps), and migration along the southern border today. Migration is part of our society and archaeology can provide insights into the long history and variability of movements in our past and present.

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The Mathematics of Data

MATH 4513

The ways in which humans want to understand, manipulate, and learn from data are growing every day. As our computing abilities grow, we discover new ways to collect more and more data in higher and higher dimensions. Mathematical theory leads us to discover how to process and understand data in more detailed, higher-order, and/or faster ways.

In The Mathematics of Data, we will introduce students to the mathematical theory of various aspects of data and image processing. The main themes will include categorization and clustering; sparsity and compressed sensing; machine learning; and topological data analysis. This class will be a mix of theory and application. Students will learn to use Python packages that perform some algorithms in each section. Students will also learn the mathematical underpinnings of the algorithms, using what they have learned in linear algebra, differential equations, and – if they have taken these courses - analysis and topology. Participants will gain experience with some of the most rapidly-growing and important applications of mathematics - the applications to data and image processing.

Although this is a Mathematics Capstone course, students from other majors who have the required mathematical background are encouraged to enroll. No prior programming experience is required. The guest speakers will be internationally-renowned experts in the areas related to the course. They will be able to talk to the students directly about applications they have worked on and the specific techniques they use. Each visiting scholar will give a public lecture showcasing an application of their work.

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