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Midwest Undergraduate Mathematics Symposium

The 18th annual Midwest Undergraduate Mathematics Symposium (MUMS) will be held on Saturday, April 9, 2022, at Simpson College. The conference will feature contributed talks and poster presentations by undergraduates.  Our plenary speaker will be Pi515 founder Nancy Mwirotsi.  Jeremy Ward '09 from Sentinel will be our alumni keynote speaker.

MUMS 2022 will take place in-person, but without catered food - we will not invite participants to eat together indoors.  Masks will be required for this event.


  • Promote student engagement in the mathematical sciences, including projects and research (completed individually or in groups).
  • Provide students the opportunity to share and celebrate the work they have completed in the mathematical sciences.
  • Introduce students to topics and applications of mathematics that are new to them.
  • Inform students about research programs and study abroad opportunities in the mathematical sciences.
  • Inform students about career and graduate school opportunities in the mathematical sciences.



8:30AM Registration and Poster Session set-up (Kent Campus Center Upper Atrium)
9:00AM Plenary address: Nancy Mwirotsi (Hubbell I)
10:00AM Break
10:15AM Student talks (Hubbell I)
11:15AM Career panel (Hubbell I)
12:00PM Lunch (On your own)
1:00PM Student Talks (Hubbell I)
2:00PM Poster session (Hubbell II)
2:30PM Alumni Keynote Address: Jeremy Ward (Hubbell I)
3:30PM Closing remarks (Hubbell I)

MUMS 2022 PDF Schedule

MUMS 2022 Abstract Book


Plenary Talks

Plenary Address: Technological disruptions: Future of work, a Digital Economy, and the role of Gen Z

Headshot of Nancy Mwirotsi
Nancy Mwirotsi

“Nancy Mwirotsi is many things to me, and not just because she is my mother. She is a person who is sympathetic, generous, outgoing, positive, supportive, humble, admired, and loved. She is driven, determined, innovative, impactful, and a visionary.” -Riziki Mwirotsi 

Nancy Mwirotsi has dedicated her life to advocating for underrepresented individuals including refugees, young women, and people of color. She believes success comes from opportunity and she works hard each day to involve local and national community members and organizations to empower hundreds of students to build skills for the future. These skills start with an afterschool STEM education and develop into a personal relationship with each student, allowing them to garner influence and gain stability in their families and communities. 
As an immigrant herself, Nancy courageously started something from nothing, because she saw a need and an opportunity. She was helping refugee mothers in the community obtain jobs and realized that their children needed support too. She understood that these students would perhaps be the first in their families to complete high school or attend college and wanted to create a pathway for their success. In 2014, her non profit Pursuit of Innovation (Pi515) was born. Today, seven years later Nancy and Pi515 has seen over 100 students graduate high school and seek post secondary education. She has provided these youth with confidence and skills for the future. One thing that has remained constant from the beginning, is Nancy's ability to create lasting personal relationships with Pi515 students and their families. 

In 2020 Nancy was given the Nation of Neighbors award by Royal Neighbors of America. Following this, she was recognized by Entrepreneur and Philanthropist John Pappajohn and received significant funding for the future of Pi515 and Building the Tech Pipeline. Currently Nancy is working to expand Pi 515 and launch Building the Tech pipeline platform to increase diversity in STEM careers, build a tech pipeline, and close the digital divide. She tirelessly pursues programming that will set her program apart from other STEM programs.

Nancy has been recognized as an innovator and for her work to increase opportunities for women, girls and minorities in the tech industry. She was recently awarded the Iowa Educators award by the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) and featured by Technology Association of Iowa as a Catalsty, technology leaders who inspire change, forge new paths and ignite technology innovation in the state of Iowa.

"The future of work is creating space to honor young people’s leadership. We will be driven by the desire to elevate young people to create, design and innovate to not just use future technology but build it." -Nancy Mwirotsi

Alumni Keynote Address: STEM Beyond the Bench 

Headshot of Jeremy Ward
Jeremy Ward

The fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) often bring with them images of students and professionals working in physical labs, on computers, or potentially in a field environment conducting research.  While this is certainly true of a wide sub-set of the career landscape, the possibilities for leveraging a background in STEM disciplines can be much broader. 

In this talk, Jeremy will share his experiences that range from internships, military service, policy making, and technical research for both academia and government organizations.  He will describe some of the most impactful educational experiences he has been provided that, upon reflection, have helped him to lead such a diverse and rewarding professional career thus far.


Please fill out the Registration Form.

There is no registration fee, but we do request that you register in advance by April 1 (note extended deadline!).  

Call for Presentations

Undergraduate students are invited and encouraged to make presentations in any mathematics-related field. Possible topics for talks and posters include, but are not limited to:

  • results of class projects;
  • solutions to contest problems (Putnam Exam, modeling or data analytics competitions, etc.);
  • results from undergraduate research projects (summer programs, capstone courses, etc.);
  • expository talks on interesting topics in mathematics;
  • papers on the history of mathematics;
  • mathematics education projects; and
  • independent work in mathematics, statistics, computer science, or related disciplines.

Abstract Submission

Abstracts are due by Friday, April 1, 2022 (note extended deadline!).  Abstract submissions must include the following information:

  • names of all presenters and their schools;
  • title of the presentation;
  • brief abstract (one paragraph);
  • your preference for a talk or poster presentation; and
  • faculty sponsor(s).

We have a limited number of time slots available for student talks, but a larger capacity for poster presentations.  Please submit your title and abstract by filling out our registration form.  To see abstracts from previous years, click on "MUMS 2019 Abstracts" or "MUMS 2017 Abstracts" below. If you have any questions, contact Dr. Katherine Vance (katherine.vance@simpson.edu) or Dr. Heidi Berger (heidi.berger@simpson.edu).

MUMS 2019 Abstracts

MUMS 2017 Abstracts

Presentation and Travel FAQs