Rm. 526 in Hibbard Hall
Phone: 715 836 2835
- Aba Mbirika
- University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire
- Department of Mathematics - HHH508
105 Garfield Avenue
Eau Claire, WI 54701
(2013 to Present) -- Assistant Professor at University of
Wisconsin at Eau Claire
(2010 to 2013) -- Postdoctoral Fellow and Instructor at Bowdoin
(2004 to 2010) -- Graduate Teaching Assistant at Univesity of Iowa
Ph.D. in Mathematics (2010) -- University of Iowa
M.S. in Mathematics (2006) -- University of Iowa
B.A. (2003) -- Sonoma State University
Professional Documents (updated Spring 2014)
a list of publications with abstracts available by clicking here.
my Research Statement
Statement (from Bowdoin College)
Evaluation Summaries (from Univ of Iowa) (2005--2010)
Evaluation Summaries (from Bowdoin College) (2010--2012)
7) All written student comments
from my Fall 2013 Calculus II course
via ideals of truncated symmetric
work with Julianna Tymoczko) -- Published by the Journal
Combinatorics (2012). (Available arXiv-version by clicking here).
- A Hessenberg
of the Garsia-Procesi basis for the
cohomology ring of Springer varieties.
Journal of Combinatorics (2010). (Available by clicking here).
- Analysis of
ideals: towards a combinatorial
description of the cohomology ring of Hessenberg varieties.
and Dissertations. Paper 708 (2010). (Available by
- On the sign
complex reflection groups G(r,p,n). (Joint work
Pietraho and Bill Silver). Status: Submitted. The submitted version available here.
- Towards a
for the alternating group.
progress -- draft available here).
Interdisciplinary Research Publications
- The Three Giri
Arielle Saiber). Accepted to the journal, Dante Studies, in
January 2014. (See bottom of page 3 of this link to read a brief overview of this very interesting collaboration!).
Expository Math Writings
- Hidden trees in the forest: On
points and prime labelings of graphs.
was inspired by my one-week residency at an AIM-NSF workshop called
"Research Experiences for Undergraduate Faculty" at ICERM in
Providence, RI, in June 2012. It contains
some of our
unpublished results, and also includes exercises and project ideas that
faculty can use to involve undergraduates in
research in the areas of Combinatorics, Graph Theory, and Number
Theory (2012). (Available by clicking here).
- On a
coin-flip problem and its
connection to pi.
I wrote this with the intention of using it as
teaching (learning) tool for other faculty (students). Hence
many exercises are included (2011). (Available by clicking here).
Teaching (at University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire)
Spring 2014 - Math 104 (Sections 001 and 002) - Finite Mathematics -
Spring 2014 - Math 314 (Section 001) - Discrete Mathematics - syllabus
Fall 2013 - Math 109 (Sections 012 and 013) - Algebra for Calculus -
Fall 2013 - Math 314 (Section 001) - Discrete Mathematics - syllabus
Teaching (at Bowdoin College)
Spring 2013 - Differential Calculus - syllabus
and a more
Fall 2012 - Combinatorics: Graph Theory and Enumeration Principles - syllabus
and a first
day of class quiz!
Summer 2012 - Bowdoin Science Experience (Topic: Lattice
geometry and graph theory) - photos
Spring 2012 - Integral Calculus - syllabus
Fall 2011 - Integral Calculus - syllabus
Summer 2011 - Bowdoin Science Experience (Topic: Mathematical induction
and number theory) - photos and
Spring 2011 - Combinatorics: Graph Theory and Enumeration Principles -
Fall 2010 - Differential Calculus - syllabus
and a more personal syllabus
Summer 2010 - Bowdoin Science Experience - (Topic: Linear algebra
multivariable calculus. Co-taught with Thom Pietraho)
University of Iowa)
Spring 2009 - Abstract Algebra - (Teaching Assistant) - syllabus
Fall 2008 - Basic Algebra II - A precalculus course - (Instructor) - syllabus
Fall 2007 - Calculus I - (Teaching Assistant)
Summer 2007 - Vigre REU Teaching Assistant in Graph Theory (and
Undergraduate Research Advisor)
Summer 2006 - Alliance REU Teaching Assistant in Linear
(Summer REU for underrepresented students in Mathematics)
Spring 2006 - Logic of Arithmetic - A course for students in elementary
education - (Teaching Assistant)
Fall 2005 - Calculus and Matrix Algebra for Business - (Teaching
2005 - Catherine Wegner Outstanding Mathematics Teaching
2006 - The University of Iowa Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award (25
total awarded campus-wide)
2009 - University Housing Academic Excellence Award (34 total awarded
I have just completed my third and final year as a Postdoctoral Fellow
Bowdoin College, and now I currently hold a tenure-track position as
Assistant Professor at University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire.
Broadly speaking, I am interested in
combinatorics as related to areas such as combinatorial representation
theory and algebraic/topological combinatorics. My
(recently from University of Iowa and now at Smith College) and I worked on a joint project on truncated symmetric
towards a combinatorial description of the cohomology ring of
varieties, which are a generalization of Springer varieties. Our results were published in the Journal of Algebraic Combinatorics in 2012 (see link above).
are currently working on a project on representation stability and
FI-modules. My collaborators Thomas Pietraho, Bill Silver, and I have recently completed and submitted a joint paper on the sign
representations of imprimitive complex reflection groups, G(r,p,n) (see link above).
During my Spring '08 semester residence at MSRI, I
begun a project (currently
on hold -
but would love to start again perhaps with a research student here at
UWEC!?) on the Schur-Weyl duality of the
alternating group begun with Tom
Macalester College and continued with co-advisor Fred
University of Iowa.
Here are brief
to some selected objects and ideas that I think about:
duality project. This 2 page write-up describes the
problem that I
am working on. It is also a good introduction for an
undergraduate interested in doing research with me on this project.
reflection groups. This 5 page write-up briefly
family of imprimitive complex reflection groups (giving various
combinatorial ways of viewing their elements), irreducible
representations of these groups, a description (and an
a generalized Robinson-Schensted correspondence between these groups
and pairs of same-shape multitableaux, and some combinatorial
implications of the latter map.
MSRI Resident Spring 2008 at
In the Spring semester of 2008, I was a Program Associate at the
Representation Theory Program.
During this semester,
I begun research with four different residents: Georgia Benkart, Steve
Doty, Sasha Kleschev, and Tom Halverson. Of the four
am continuing the work started with Tom Halverson on the alternating
group. Thus far I have completely determined the branching
for this group. Towards a Schur-Weyl duality of this group, I
investigating the centralizer of its action on an n-fold tensor product
of its permutation representation. Vaughn Jones (also in
residence this semester) talked with me about his findings on the
symmetric group's centralizer, i.e., the so-called partition algebra.
work was done by him in 1992. So far no one has done the
alternating group analogue. I am attempting to accomplish
Recent/Future Invited Talks/Conferences/Colloquiums
Feb 9, 2014 - Progressive Valley Cooperative - Title: A general audience math talk on two counting problems
(Eau Claire, WI)
March 26, 2014 - Meals with Honors Students Presentation - Title: Combinatorics and a connection to the value pi - (Eau Claire, WI)
April 18, 2014 - University of Minnesota Combinatorics Seminar - Title: TBD - (Minneapolis, MN)
Conference/Colloquium/Seminar Talks Given
1. Various talks in the Representation Theory Seminar on
GL(2)-representations over a finite field - 2006 to 2007 (University of
2. Various talks in the Representation Theory Seminar on Nondegenerate
Smooth Representations - 2006 to 2007 (University of
3. Two talks in the Algebraic Geometry Seminar on Flag Varieties and
Grassmanians of different Lie Type - Fall 2007 (University of Iowa)
4. VIGRE REU Seminar talk on Partition Theory - Summer 2008 (University
5. GAUSS talk to Prospective Graduate Students - Title: All of Math
Grad School in a Nutshell -
March 2009 (University of Iowa)
6. AMS Sectional Meeting [Special Session on Algebra, Geometry and
Combinatorics] - Title: Cohomology
of Hessenberg Varieties -
(University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)
7. History talk to undergrads - Title: Euler, Da Man!
- April 2009
(Winona State University at Minnesota)
8. Heartland Math Talk - Title: Interesting
Aspects of Number
Partitions - April 2009
(University of Wisconsin at LaCrosse)
9. Combinatorial Algebraic Geometry on Flag Varieties Conference -
Intro to Schubert Calculus
- June 2009 (University of Iowa)
10. Algebraic Geometry Seminar - Title: A combinatorial
H^*(Peterson) - September
2009 (University of Iowa)
11. MAA Iowa Sectional Meeting - Title: Cool combinatorics
arising in a
cohomology hunt! - October
2009 (University of Northern Iowa)
What sort of mathematics
does aBa do? - February 2010
(University of Wisconsin at Eau Claire)
13. Title: Are
trying to take over the world?
February 2010 (Bowdoin College in Maine)
14. Title: Are
geometers trying to take over the
- March 2010 (Wake Forest University in North Carolina)
15. AMS Central Section Meeting [Special Session on Combinatorial
Representation Theory] - Title: Exploring
the cohomology ring of
generalized Springer varieties
- April 2010 (Macalester College
16. MAA Math Fest [Special Session on Combinatorial Games and
Schubert Calculus] - Title:
symmetric functions and their
application to cohomology rings of Hessenberg varieties
(Pittsburgh, PA) - Abstract
17. M.I.T. Combinatorics Seminar - Title: Ideals of partial
functions and a generalization of the Tanisaki ideal
(Massachusetts Institute of Technology) - Abstract
18. Math Colloquium - Title: From
Lewis Carroll to an Interesting
Conjecture -- The Rabbit Hole Exposed!?
- October 2010 (Colby
in Maine) - Abstract
19. MAA Northeastern Section Meeting - Title: What's
cool about combinatorics?
- November 2010 (Providence College in Rhode Island) - Abstract
20. AMS Central Section Meeting [Special Session on
Geometric Representation Theory] - Title: Commutative algebra meets
representation theory -
(University of Iowa at Iowa City, IA),
also attended pre-conference workshop on "Applications to Schubert
Calculus" - March 18-20, 2011 (University of Iowa) - Abstract
21. AMS Eastern Section Meeting [Special Session on
Combinatorial Representation Theory] - Title: Combinatorial commutative
algebra meets an
object from geometric representation theory
- April 9-10, 2011
(College of the
Holy Cross at Worcester, MA) - Abstract
22. Faculty Research Seminar - Title: Commutative algebraic
investigate the cohomology ring of certain family of varieties
April 2011 (Bowdoin College)
23. AMS Southeastern Section Meeting [Special
Session on Symmetric functions] - Title: Truncated symmetric functions
application to generalized Springer theory - September
2011 (Wake Forest University in
Winston Salem, NC) - Abstract -
24. M*A*T*H Colloquium - Title: Do
you value the value of Pi? - March 14, 2012
University) - Abstract
Recording (click on high speed version)
25. NSF USTARS
(Underrepresented Students in Topology and
Algebra Research Symposium) - Title: Two
families united as one - A symmetric functions tale -
2012 (University of Iowa) - Group
26. SACNAS [Scientific
Symposia Session in Number Theory] - Title: A number theoretic connection to
in graph theory - October 11-14, 2012 - (Seattle, WA)
27. The February 2013 on-campus job interview talks:
28. NSF USTARS
Conference (Underrepresented Students in Topology and
Algebra Research Symposium) - Title: Robinson-Schensted
complex reflection groups G(r,p,n) and pairs of multitableaux
- April 19-22, 2013 -
University) - Abstract
- February 1, 2013: Smith College (two talks) --
lunch talk for students, and (2) Research talk for faculty
- February 4, 2013: Bucknell University -- Research
- February 11, 2013: Harvey Mudd College --
Research talk for
faculty and students
- February 14, 2013: Reed College -- Research talk
faculty and students
- February 18, 2013: University of Wisconsin at Eau
Research/Colloquium talk for faculty and students
Service (at University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire)March 2014 - Volunteer for the Sonia Kovalevsky Day for female middle and high school students.
February 2013 - Volunteer for the high school Math Meet.
September 2013 - Organized the UWEC Math Dept "Math in the Woods" event at Lake Wissota, WI.
2013 - 4th Annual "Eau Cares" House Calls Program - Volunteered to
check-in with students inside their dorm rooms and see how their first
few weeks are going.
Fall 2013 to Present - Faculty Mentor for the Math Club.
2013 to Present - Mathematics Department Library Committee - Along with
Ursula Whitcher, we coordinate the library purchases for the department.
Service (at Bowdoin College
and Maine Community)
September 2010 - Bowdoin Common Good Day volunteer at People Plus,
teen and older adult center in Brunswick, ME
Spring 2011 - Building atmosphere coordinator for Searles Hall (revitalization of the Math
Common Room -
Searles 214 with Emma Chiappetta '11)
April 2011 - Judge for Bowdoin Entertainment Board's Battle of the Bands
April 2011 - Assisted with the 2nd night Passover seder at The Cedars,
a Jewish senior center in Portland, ME
Summer 2010, 2011, and 2012 - Bowdoin
Science Experience instructor
October 2011 - Runway model for Bowdoin Career Planning's Do's and Dont's Fashion Show
2011 & 2012
- Sat on faculty panel for Lincoln
Middle School's ELL program's visit with students.
February 2012 - Judge for Class of 2014's Mr. Polar Bear Contest
September 2012 - Bowdoin Common Good Day volunteer at ArtVan, a mobile
program in Bath, ME
November 2012 - Explore Bowdoin - met with prospective students from
various diverse backgrounds
November 2012 - Discussing Difference - A Bowdoin ResLife-sponsored
event to involve students in open and honest conversations regarding
diversity, privilege and difference.
Service (at Univ of Iowa)
2005 to 2010 - Undergraduate Math Club
Fall 2005 - Tutor for displaced victims of Hurricane Katrina
2005, 2007 to 2010 - Undergraduate Math Lab Tutor
2008 to 2010 - English Buddy Program (tutored English to help
foreign math graduate students pass the SPEAK exam)
Member, American Mathematical Society -- AMS
Member, Mathematical Association of America -- MAA
Section NExT Fellow
Fellow (Blue 10 Dot)
Videos of me explaining mathematical concepts to my students
I wrote this for my Spring 2012 Bowdoin students in Calculus II.
Lyrics sheet available here.
This is my first ever combinatorial "poem". I wrote it for my
Bowdoin students in Spring 2011 to give them a wee break and a fun
overview of the two
major topics covered in our Math 258 course. Lyrics sheets
blackboard shots available by clicking here.
When I found out my office mate Jonas Meyer was holding analysis class
on a school holiday, I felt bummed out for the students. So I
decided to write them a math treat. The holiday was July 4th
next day), so there's a mix of patriotism in this poem about analysis.
Lyric sheet available here.
This poem was delivered to my Abstract Algebra class at the Univ
of Iowa in Spring 2009. I actually wrote it while I was an
Sonoma State University in Northern California. Lyric sheet
The above is a poem I wrote for the class I taught in Fall 2008 at the
Univ of Iowa. My friend Max filmed me in a Chinese restaurant
NYC with some sorta Blackberry gizmo or something. I wasn't
convinced that the machine had the capabilities to record a video, but
it did it seems. Click above to watch/listen.
|Teaching a Course on
Elementary Education Majors at Univ of Iowa in Spring 2006
|... sometimes teaching
indoors on a nice day is such a drag -
that's when you need a blackboard on wheels!!
This page was last modified on March 2, 2014, by
beings from a galaxy near you. Go U Blugolds!!
on the bear below to go to my official UWEC faculty webpage:
on "Proclaimer", and Tibetan
Buddhist scholar Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche introduces
film up to the 4min marker. The meat of the film's discussion
the 9min marker. Also when asked how/why/when I got
math, I usually answer with words like "outdoor raves / free
full moon gatherings". I
found mathematics on many sunrises & moonsets in deserts, farms,
fields, and Pacific coast beaches--somewhere between minimal detroit
house, deep house, tribal house, and hard acid techno
house (see map on House) at this link.
If you were one of the many beautiful souls that evolved with me
through our bliss & harmony on those mornings in Northern
California, then you might recall the bass bins oozing Psychotropic Hypnosis or perhaps Frankie Knuckles' Whistle Song.
Love&LIGHT to Wicked, Sunset, Come-Unity, the Gathering,
Friends and Family, Floppy's, Consortium of Collective Consciousness
(CCC), Semi-Permanent Autonomous Zone (SPAZ), and all the sound system