Math Day 2019 - January 26, 2019

FAU Math Day 2024, March 9, 2024


The nineteenth annual FAU Math Day will be held on Saturday, Match 9, 2024, on the Boca Raton campus of Florida Atlantic University. As usual, participants can expect exciting competitions and instructive lectures designed to please everybody who loves mathematics, who is contemplating a career in mathematics or science, or who already is pursuing such a career. If you are a high school student who likes and enjoys mathematics come for a day of excitement and fun, with a chance to win prizes and to learn more about mathematics. If you are a teacher, come to see your students compete and to meet your college colleagues. Math Day is an opportunity for high school mathematics faculty and mathematically inclined students of schools in Palm Beach, Broward, Martin and Dade counties, and for math faculty and students at Florida Atlantic University to get together, get to know each other, and share their appreciation of mathematics.

The current Math Day will follow the format of the previous one; with two competitions: An individual competition, with prizes for the winner and the two runner ups, and a team competition very loosely modelled on the AMS competition Who Wants to be a Mathematician. This last competition will alternate between mathematics questions, and what could be called Math Trivia questions; i.e., questions from the history of mathematics.We will award three prizes for that competition: Best in the math part, best in the so called trivia part, best overall. In addition to the competitions, there will be other opportunities to win prizes during the day. More details on the competitions will be forthcoming as we get closer to the day itself.

This year's keynote speaker is Professor Francis Motta, from our Department of Mathematics and Statistics. Professor Motta got his Ph. D. from Colorado State University and he is an expert in dynamical systems and the very important discipline of applying topological methods to data analysis.His talk will be on mathematical biology, anoher one of his areas of expertise. We are very much looking forward to his address on Math Day.

Registration:    Students can register as individuals or be registered by a teacher as part of a team. Students registered as part of a team are also automatically registered as individuals and can take part in both competitions. Registration is free and is on a first come, first served basis. It will be held open until 250 students are registered or until 5PM of Thursday March 7, whichever happens first. Depending on the number of participants, late, at the door registration might be allowed. We would like to invite all high school teachers to register one or more teams of three to five students to represent their school. To register, please click on the appropriate link below.

  Teachers registering a team, please click here

 Students registering individually, not part of a team, please click here

Teachers registering individually, please click here

The rules for the competitions are:

  • For both competitions, the only allowed implements are pencils (or pens), and paper. The use of any computational devices that use any form of electric power, including all types of calculators, iphones, ipads, droids, etc. is strictly forbidden. Any individual or team displaying any of these objects will be immediately disqualified. You should not need any of them. We will allow, however, an abacus, or a slide rule, or a set of Napier's bones.
  • For the team competition, a team consists of three to five students of the same school, sponsored by a teacher from the school. We will allow non-sponsored teams to compete, but they will not be in the running for the cash prize (though they might win other prizes). Sponsored teams play for their school and the sponsoring teacher (or her/his representative) picks up the prize of the winning team.
  • In the description of prizes below, Winning Team A is the team with the best score in the math part. Wining Team B is the team representing a school other than the school of Winning Team A with the highest best overall score. Winning Team C is the team with the highest score in the math trivia part, from a school other than the schools of teams A and B.
  • There will be cash and other prizes; to be determined. Winners will also get trophies.
  • There also will be some symbolic prizes for the teachers attending the event.
  • A dispute center will be set up to deal with possible disputes. The decision of the judge or judges at the center will be final.


Tentative Schedule

8:00-8:30 AM Pick up registration packages
8:30-9:00 AM Reception by the Chair of Mathematical Sciences at FAU (GN 101)
9:00-10:15AM Individual Competition (GN 101)

Lecture for Sponsors:
TBA (PS 109)
10:30-11:30AM Keynote Address:

Title: Unveiling Nature's Mysteries: Exploring the Intersection of Math and Biology 


Professor Francis Motta

Abstract: Mathematics is built on logic and proof, while biology is an observational science; there's no proof, only evidence. So, what can mathematicians do to help biologists and vice versa? Join us on a journey where mathematics meets biology that reveals the profound synergy between these seemingly disparate fields. 

From understanding the curious and elegant patterns in nature's designs, to developing ways to use principles of life to tackle fundamentally important questions in human health, mathematical thinking is needed to elucidate fascinating observations about living things, now more than ever. From predicting how quickly an infectious disease will move through a population, to designing never-before-seen proteins that perform specific functions, to explaining the complex dance of biological molecules underlying many dynamic phenomena.  In this talk we'll showcase the power of the language of mathematics to describe and decode some of the mysteries of the natural world.

We will also highlight exciting new opportunities at Florida Atlantic University to study the burgeoning science at the intersection of mathematics and biology as we embark on a mathematical exploration to illuminate the beauty and complexity of life itself.
11:30AM-1:00PM Lunch
1:30-3:00PM Team Competition
3:00-3:30PM Awards Ceremony (Sponsors)(GN 101)

For questions or suggestions, send your e-mails to or call Dr. Tomas Schonbek at (561) 297-3355, or email him at .

Suggestions from teachers, especially from those who attended previous Math Days, are particularly welcome.

About FAU

Florida Atlantic University serves over 30,000 undergraduates, and 5,000 graduate and professional students in a rapidly expanding urban environment with the main campus located three miles from the Atlantic Ocean, on an 850-acre site in Boca Raton. The department of mathematical sciences offers the degrees BA, BS, MS, MS in Applied Mathematics and Statistics, MS in Teaching, and Ph.D. in Mathematics. There are 35 faculty members in the department, most of them actively engaged in research in areas that range from the purely classical to cutting-edge applications in biomathematics and communications security. Students graduating from the department have the option of pursuing careers in teaching, in industry, or continue their mathematical education by enrolling in a graduate program, either at FAU or elsewhere. For qualified students, the department offers a combined BS-MS program.


Math Day 2024 is made possible through several very generous donors.

Math Day is organized by Tomas Schonbek, Emily Cimillo, Sonia Kimbrough, Maria Provost, and Eda Kuluslu. The competition problems are prepared by math faculty, including Xiao-Dong Zhang, and Tomas Schonbek. Moreover, Math Day would not be possible without the enthusiastic and indispensable support received from the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science, the Center for Cryptology and Information Security, the staff, faculty, and students of the Department of Mathematical Sciences, and last, but definitely not least, from all the hard working high school mathematics teachers in Broward, Palm Beach, Dade, and Martin counties.