How to start a SIAM chapter?
(2014-12-19, Susanne Beckers)
Daily life of a Ph.D. student is fine: Come to work, have a cup of coffee, discuss with other students, work on interesting stuff, have a cookie, research some details, join a bunch of people to enjoy a meal together, have another cup of coffee, and do some more research. But from time to time we get in touch with "the real world": We attend conferences and get to know other people and other research topics. It is interesting how topics connect and how this connection extends to application and industry.
The communication between us applied math Ph.D. students in Hamburg is fairly high. We organize a common seminar where we present our work to each other, we have lunch together (sometimes even homemade by one of us), enjoy lively discussions during an extended coffee break, and at times we even spend evenings together - some mathematically motivated, others not ;-). You see: A nicely woven fine mesh.
In summer 2014 we wondered how we could attach the loose boundaries of our fine mesh to "the real world". How could we nest our mesh in a wider one - maybe even a mesh that is spanning the globe? A mesh that would be much better because the sampling points are not only mathematicians but also engineers, physicists, economists, and many, many more. Some of us have been to SIAM conferences and workshops and we thought about tying our small mesh to the big SIAM network. We realized that the SIAM student chapters are exactly what we like to be: A group of young researchers enjoying mathematics, having fun, promoting the most fundamental of all natural sciences, and being well connected to other applied mathematicians and applicants of mathematics.
These were the reasons why our founding president, Petar Sapun, worked out how to start a SIAM student chapter and one by one we joined him: Janja Nahrstaedt, Tobias Jordan, and me, Susanne Beckers. We thought about further activities, meetings, and financial plans. We thought about nodal points with other groups and about refining our mesh.
However, we still go on working, drinking cups of coffee, discussing with other students, having cookies, doing research, enjoying time together, but we do it as a SIAM student chapter, with no loose ends and full of ideas how to fascinate more people for mathematics. So here we are now: Ready to mesh the world!