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Traymon Beavers, a junior majoring in mathematics with a minor in creative writing, will soon be travelling to Utah to present his work at the Center for Undergraduate Research in Mathematics at Brigham Young University. After being encouraged by his freshman advisor, mathematics and science professor Elizabeth Brown, to take part in an undergraduate research experience in the well regarded program at St. Mary's College in Maryland, Beavers caught the research bug. In addition to tutoring at the Science and Math Learning Center at JMU, Beavers continues his passion for mathematical research under professors Brant Jones and Edwin O’Shea, both in the mathematics and science department. Beavers has already presented his research team's original work at sectional meetings of the Mathematical Association of America.
Originally from Midlothian, Virginia, Traymon found his inspiration to study mathematics from "a wonderful teacher," Mrs. Amber Mierchuk of Cosby High School. Beavers became a mathematics major at JMU for many reasons, and says, “The main one is the simple fact that I love finding solutions to problems. But not just the actual solution derived…” Interestingly, finishing a problem is not his favorite part of researching mathematics, “I find it vastly rewarding, don’t misunderstand me, but once the problem is solved the struggle is over. This is the main reason I enjoy mathematical research: the struggle never ends."
As Beavers continues his research, he utilizes his studies in creative writing to draw connections between mathematics and poetry, "Repetition in poetry stresses themes and tones,” explains Beavers, “This is also the case in a mathematical setting where the notation and concepts can get lost without a repetitious emphasis on the mathematics' critical parts."
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