Partnering in mathematics research, engagement and education

La Trobe is partnering with Australian Mathematical Sciences Institute (AMSI), Australia’s peak body representing mathematics research, engagement and education

La Trobe is a founding and current Joint Venture Partner of the Australian Mathematical Sciences Institute (AMSI), Australia’s peak body representing mathematics research, engagement and education.

We have been a proud partner of AMSI since its inception in 2002. Emeritus Professor Phil Broadbridge and Emeritus Professor Geoff Prince served as past Directors of AMSI, and Emeritus Professor Geoff Prince received the 2019 Distinguished Service Award for longest serving Director.

La Trobe’s membership enables the University to contribute to strategic directions in mathematics.

The Department has hosted two AMSI Choose Maths events since 2018, aimed at encouraging female secondary school students to engage with the discipline. It also works collaboratively with AMSI to produce the MathsAdds Careers Guide, a collection of job advertisements and profiles to showcase career opportunities in mathematics, statistics and data science. The publication, developed by La Trobe mathematicians at our Bendigo campus, is distributed to schools and universities nationally and internationally.

The partnership also provides our students with exciting opportunities including winter and summer schools – hosted by the Department in 2010 and 2020 – and summer vacation research scholarships.

"Our students have gained enormously through our AMSI membership,” says Dr Christopher Lenard, Head of the Department of Mathematics and Statistics. “Summer vacation research scholarships, and the opportunity to enrol in specialist subjects from around the country, are just some of the benefits."

Nauvoo Perez, a third-year student in our Bachelor of Science degree and majoring in statistics, recently completed a six-week supervised vacation research project with AMSI.

“I created a prototype application that assisted non-specialists to identify cells in our body which recognise and kill cancer cells, or tumour-infiltrating lymphocytes, in colorectal tissue images,” she explains.

“My supervisor, Dr Hien Nguyen, was very supportive and assisted whenever I got stuck, while also giving me a lot of freedom with the project,” says Perez. “Dr Nguyen’s mentoring made a great impact and our conversations around career progression, and the role of statisticians in and outside of research, really helped me as a student and a person.”

At the end of her research project, Perez presented her findings at AMSI Connect and produced a written report.

“The project exposed me to a network of passionate science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) peers,” adds Perez. “It nurtured my curiosity, and reinforced my love for learning, exploring and seeking answers. In turn, this increased my confidence in tackling topics and subjects that fall outside of my expertise.”

“When I graduate I would like to explore the space where programming and statistics intersect. I aspire to one day work with young mothers who wish to pursue a STEM career.”

Find out more about the Department of Mathematics and Statistics on the website.