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AIM Program Mission and History

Rationale and Mission

The AIM Program is designed to be attractive to students who enjoy the interaction of mathematics with science, engineering or other quantitative disciplines. An AIM student does not necessarily have an undergraduate degree in mathematics, but can also be admitted with an undergraduate degree in a relevant application area.

The important aspect that all AIM students share regardless of undergraduate background is that they are comfortable with mathematical concepts and have a strong interest in applying them to some partner discipline (see the list of former students below for a representative but not at all exhaustive sample of potential partner disciplines). Students completing a degree in the AIM Program will be suitably trained for a research career in a world where mathematical sophistication is increasingly important in all areas of application.

Full details of the academic structure of the AIM Program are presented elsewhere on this site. At this time we wish to emphasize one novel aspect of the essential interdisciplinary nature of the program: every AIM Ph.D. student has not just one faculty advisor, but two co-advisors. One co-advisor can be any faculty member of the Department of Mathematics, and the other --- representing the student's chosen partner discipline --- can be chosen from any department other than mathematics at the University of Michigan. Some AIM students work so closely with their partner discpline co-advisor that they spend much of their time on thesis research outside of the Department of Mathematics. Others work more closely with their Mathematics co-advisor. The AIM Program is sufficiently flexible to support a wide range of working relationships among graduate students and their two co-advisors. The co-advisor system also ensures that AIM Ph.D. students are prepared for subsequent employment in two different kinds of academic departments, as well as in industry.

Although administered from the Department of Mathematics, AIM differs significantly from the Mathematics graduate program in the requirements for the M.S. and Ph.D. degrees, which are specially designed to account for more varied backgrounds of incoming graduate students and to showcase the essential interdisciplinary nature of the AIM Program. Details of these requirements can be found by following the links on the left.

AIM Program History

By the 1990's it became clear that the Department of Mathematics at the University of Michigan would benefit from an infusion of faculty working in interdisciplinary science, and due to the vision of former department chair D. Lewis an Interdisciplinary Initiative was formulated that produced a number of faculty positions devoted to this new area. The period 1997--1999 saw the development, institutional approval, and official accreditation of the AIM Graduate Program by a committee consisting of C. R. Doering and J. Sneyd under the leadership of then department chair B. A. Taylor. The first class of AIM graduate students was admitted in Fall of 2000 and now the program operates at an approximate equilibrium of about 30 Ph.D. students distributed over 5 classes. The M.S. program is smaller, and caters to professionals wanting to continue their education as well as students from undergraduate institutions. The Marjorie Lee Browne Scholars Program was added as an option for the AIM M.S. program in 2010.

The Directors of the AIM Program have been: C. R. Doering (1999 -- 2003), P. Smereka (2003--2008), P. D. Miller (2008--2012), R. Vershynin (2013--2014), S. Esedoglu (2014--2015), and S. Alben (2015--). It is fair to say that the Interdisciplinary Initiative has taken root at the University of Michigan. Indeed, in 2007 the applied mathematics faculty at the University of Michigan was ranked #1 in the country in the Faculty Scholarly Productivity Index calculated by Academic Analytics as reported in the Chronicle of Higher Education. This index included the contributions of both mathematics faculty and faculty from other departments, all of which are available to AIM Ph.D. students as co-advisors.

AIM Ph.D. Graduates

2015-2016 Academic Year

Student Partner Discipline Co-advisors Thesis Initial Job Placement
David Prigge   Karni & Remi Abgrail-Zurich Absorbing Boundary Conditions and Numerical Methods for the Linearized Water Wave Equation in 1 and 2 Dimensions  
Andre Souza   Viswanath & Doering An Optimal Control Approach to Bounding Transport Properties of Thermal Convection Georgia Tech
Olivia Walch   Forger & Koon Wong Exploring subconscious vision and circadian rhythms through mathematical modeling University of Michigan
Gary Marple   Veerapaneni & Eniola-Adefeso Fast, High-order Algorithms for Simulating Vesicle Flows Through Constrained Geometries University of Michigan
Jiaqi Li   Bayraktar & Uday Rajan Stochastic Perron for Stochastic Target Problems Goldman Sachs
Seyed Hamed Razavi   Bloch & Jessy Grizzle (EECS) Symmetric Hybrid Systems: Periodic Gait Design for Legged Robots EPFL, Switzerland
Wei Li   Borcea & Schotland Nonlinear Wave Propagation in Deterministic and Stochastic Media University of Minnesota

2014-2015 Academic Year

Student Partner Discipline Co-advisors Thesis Initial Job Placement
Andrew Brouwer Epidemiology Marisa Eisenberg & Rafael Meza Models of HPV as an Infectious Disease and as an Etiological Agent of Cancer University of Michigan
Daniel DeWoskin Molecular and Integrative Physiology Daniel Forger & Santiago Schnell Multiscale Modeling of Coupled Oscillators with Applications to the Mammalian Circadian Clock University of California, Davis
Brittan Farmer Mechanical Engineering Selim Esedoglu & John Hart Modeling and Simulation of Carbon Nanotube Growth University of Minnesota
Alfredo Wetzel Earth and Environmental Sciences Peter Miller & Brian Arbic Three Stratified Fluid Models: Benjamin-Ono, Tidal Resonance, and Quasi-Geostrophy University of Wisconsin
Yuchong Zhang Finance Erhan Bayraktar & Uday Rajan Problems in Mathematical Finance Related to Transaction Costs and Model Uncertainty Columbia University
Zhou Zhou Business Technology and Operations Erhan Bayraktar & Hyun Soo Ahn Topics in Optimal Stopping and Fundamental Theorem of Asset Pricing University of Minnesota

2013-2014 Academic Year

Student Partner Discipline Co-advisors Thesis Initial Job Placement
Jeffrey Calder Electrical Engineering and Computer Science Selim Esedoglu & Alfred Hero Hamilton-Jacobi Equations for Sorting and Percolation Problems University of California, Berkeley
Maria Riolo Ecology and Evolutionary Biology Charles Doering & Pejman Rohani Topics in Structured Host-Antagonist Interactions University of Michigan
Jingchen Wu Industrial and Operations Engineering Joseph Conlon & Xiuli Chao Some Problems in Stochastic Control Theory Related to Inventory Management and Coarsening Amazon
Yilun Wu Physics Joel Smoller& Fred Adams On Existence and Properties of Rotating Star Solutions to the Euler-Poisson Equations Indiana University, Bloomington

2012-2013 Academic Year

Student Partner Discipline Co-advisors Thesis Initial Job Placement
Peter Bosler Atmospheric, Oceanic and Space Sciences Robert Krasny & Christiane Jablonowski Particle Methods for Geophysical Flow on the Sphere University of Michigan
Sohhyun Chung Industrial and Operations Ingeering Joseph Conlon & Jussi Keppo
The Impact of Volcker Rule on Bank Profits and Default Probabilities Samsung Life Insurance
Huaiying Gu Finance Joseph Conlon & Haitao Li Value-at-Risk (VaR) and Dynamic Portfolio Selection Key Corp.
Yu-Jui Huang Finance Erhan Bayraktar & Haitao Li Topics in Stochastic Control with Applications to Finance Dublin City University
Jae Kyoung Kim Biology Daniel Forger & Victoria Booth Mathematical Modeling and Analysis of Cellular Clocks
(Winner of the Sumner B. Myers Award)
Ohio State University
Kristofer-Roy Reyes Materials Science Peter Smereka & Joanna Mirecki Millunchick Fast Kinetic Monte Carlo Simulations: Implementation, Application, and Analysis Princeton University
Burhan Sadiq Atmospheric Science Divakar Viswanath & John Boyd Finite Difference Methods, Hermite Interpolation and Quasi-Uniform Spectral Schemes Johns Hopkins University
Paul Shearer Physics Anna GilbertRichard Frazin & Alfred Hero Separable Inverse Problems, Blind Deconvolution, and Stray Light Correction for Extreme Ultraviolet Solar Images University of Michigan

2011-2012 Academic Year

Student Partner Discipline Co-advisors Thesis Initial Job Placement
Steven Flores Physics Charlie Doering & Robert Ziff (Also Peter Kleban, University of Maine) Correlation Functions in Two-Dimensional Critical Systems with Conformal Symmetry University of New Hampshire
Ashley Holland Economics Virginia Young & Matias Cattaneo
Penalized Spline Estimation in the Partially Linear Model Grace College
Xueying Hu Finance Erhan Bayraktar & Haitao Li Essays in Financial and Insurance Mathematics Goldman Sachs
Geri Izbicki-Jennings Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering Smadar Karni & Robert Beck Efficient Numerical Methods for Water Wave Propagation in Unbounded Domains University of Massachusetts
Matthew Masarik Astronomy Joel Smoller& Marta Volonteri Decay of Solutions to the Wave Equation in Static Spherically Symmetric Spacetimes
(Honorable Mention for the Rackham ProQuest Distinguished Dissertation award)
SRI International
Lindsey McCarty Industrial and Operations Engineering Divakar Viswanath & Amy Cohn Preemptive Rerouting of Airline Passengers under Uncertain Delays Cedarville University
Darragh Rooney Physics Tony Bloch & Chitra Rangan Control of Finite-Dimensional Quantum Systems under Lindblad Dissipation Universität Würzburg, Germany
Dave Starinshak Aerospace Engineering Smadar Karni & Kenneth Powell Level Set Methods for Multimaterial Radiative Shock Hydrodynamics Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
Jared Whitehead Atmospheric, Oceanic and Space Science Charlie Doering & Richard Rood Topics in Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Los Alamos National Laboratory

2010-2011 Academic Year

Student Partner Discipline Co-advisors Thesis Initial Job Placement
Matthew Elsey Mechanical Engineering Selim Esedoglu & Wei Lu Algorithms for Multiphase Motion with Applications to Materials Science
(Winner of the Sumner B. Myers Award)
Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences, New York University
Brian Jennings Chemistry Alejandro Uribe & Eitan Geva Generalized Lagrangian States and Their Propagation in Bargmann Space Westfield State University
Ting Wang Finance Virginia Young & Haitao Li Stochastic Analysis of Insurance Products Goldman Sachs

2009-2010 Academic Year

Student Partner Discipline Co-advisors Thesis Initial Job Placement
Henry Boateng Chemistry Robert Krasny & Eitan Geva Cartesian Treecode Algorithms for Electrostatic Interactions in Molecular Dynamics Simulations University of Michigan
Catherine Kublik Biomedical Engineering Selim Esedoglu & Jeffrey Fessler Topics in PDE-Based Image Processing
(Winner of the Ralph B. Baldwin Prize in Astrophysics and Space Sciences)
University of Texas, Austin
Tomoki Ohsawa Physics Tony Bloch & Leopoldo Pando-Zayas Nonholonomic and Discrete Hamilton-Jacobi Theory University of California, San Diego
Lei Wang Atmospheric, Oceanic, and Space Science Robert Krasny & John Boyd Radial Basis Functions and Vortex Methods and their Application to Vortex Dynamics on a Rotating Sphere Argonne National Laboratory
Zhengjie Xu Atmospheric, Oceanic, and Space Science Peter Miller& John Boyd Asymptotic Analysis and Numerical Analysis of the Benjamin-Ono Equation Bloomberg L.L.C.

2008-2009 Academic Year

Student Partner Discipline Co-advisors Thesis Initial Job Placement
Arvind Baskaran Mechanical Engineering Peter Smereka & Krishna Garikipati Modeling and Simulation of Heteroepitaxial Growth Institute for Pure and Applied Mathematics (UCLA)
Katarina Bodova Statistics Charlie Doering & Anna Amirdjanova Topics in Applied Stochastic Dynamics Comenius University, Bratislava, Slovakia
Oscar Fernandez Physics Tony Bloch & Alberto Rojo The Hamiltonization of Nonholonomic Systems and its Applications University of Michigan
Russell Golman Complex Systems / Political Science Andreas Blass & Scott Page Essays on Population Learning Dynamics and Boundedly Rational Behavior Carnegie Mellon University
Ray Maleh Biomedical Engineering Anna Gilbert & Jeffrey Fessler Fast Sparse Approximation Algorithms for Medical Imaging L3 Communications
Sourya Shrestha Ecology and Evolutionary Biology Patrick Nelson & Aaron King Modeling Transmission and Evolutionary Dynamics of Infectious Diseases University of Michigan
Richard Vasques Nuclear Engineering Charlie Doering & Edward Larsen Anisotropic Diffusion of Neutral Particles in Stochastic Media McKinsey & Company

2007-2008 Academic Year

Student Partner Discipline Co-advisors Thesis Initial Job Placement
Amy Bauer Biology/Physics Trachette Jackson & Yi Jiang A Multi-Scale Cell-Based Model to Simulate and Elucidate the Mechanisms Controlling Tumor-Induced Angiogenesis Los Alamos National Laboratory
Sara Gentry Cellular and Developmental Biology Trachette Jackson & Sean Morrison Mathematical Modeling of Mutation Acquisition in Hierarchical Tissues: Quantification of the Cancer Stem Cell Hypothesis University of Michigan
Mark Iwen Electrical Engineering and Computer Science Martin Strauss & Jignesh Patel Algorithmic Compressed Sensing with Applications Institute for Mathematics and its Applications
Jason Kutch Mechanical/Biomedical Engineering Tony Bloch & Art Kuo Signal in Human Motor Unsteadiness: Detecting the Action and Activity of Muscles University of Southern California, Biomedical Engineering
Jared Maruskin Aerospace Engineering Tony Bloch & Dan Scheeres On the Dynamical Propagation of Subvolumes and on the Geometry and Variational Principles of Nonholonomic Systems San Jose State University

2006-2007 Academic Year

Student Partner Discipline Co-advisors Thesis Initial Job Placement
Hyekyung Min Industrial and Operations Engineering Joseph Conlon & Jussi Keppo Stochastic Control Models of Optimal Dividend and Capital Financing University of California, Santa Barbara, Statistics and Applied Probability
Khachik Sargsyan Physics Charlie Doering & Leonard Sander First Passage Times in the Near-Continuum Limit of Birth-Death Processes Sandia National Laboratory
Andrew Stein Physics Trachette Jackson & Leonard Sander Mathematical Models for Glioblastoma Invation in Vitro Institute for Mathematics and its Applications

2005-2006 Academic Year

Student Partner Discipline Co-advisors Thesis Initial Job Placement
Sebastien Chivoret Statistics Charlie Doering & Anna Amirdjanova Properties of Multiple Stochastic Integrals with Respect to Fractional Brownian Motion and Applications to Nonlinear Filtering Goldman Sachs
Jungmin Choi Industrial and Operations Engineering Mattias Jonsson & Jussi Keppo Partial Hedging in Financial Markets with a Large Agent Florida State University
Leon Kaganovskiy Aerospace Engineering Robert Krasny & Werner Dahm Adaptive Hierarchical Tree-Based Panel Method for 3-D Vortex Sheet Motion New College of Florida
Lu Lu Geophysics Charlie Doering & Carolina Lithgow-Bertelloni Bounds on the Enstrophy Growth Rate for Solutions of the 3D Navier-Stokes Equations Wachovia Capital Markets

2004-2005 Academic Year

Student Partner Discipline Co-advisors Thesis Initial Job Placement
Stanca Ciupe Epidemiology Patrick Nelson & James Koopman Development and Applications of Mathematical Tools in Models of Infectious Diseases and Biological Phenomena Santa Fe Institute/Los Alamos National Laboratory

2003-2004 Academic Year

Student Partner Discipline Co-advisors Thesis Initial Job Placement
Georgios Dalakouras Finance Kristen Moore & Tyler Shumway A New Fast and Robust Technique for Pricing and Hedging Asian Options Susquehanna Investment Group