The Community College Math Ship

The Community College Math Ship
U.S.S. Math Club

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Meeting Minutes 9/18

Hello everyone,

We had a great meeting with a large turn-out after the Club Fair. We were off to a strong start with a meet-and-greet-and-pizza-eat and followed with several fun math problems. The attendees to the meeting include:
Prof. Tong
The problems we solved were:

Just a reminder that math club meeting are every other Friday so the next two meetings will be:
Oct 2nd  @ 11-12
Oct 16th @ 11-12
Feel free to bring some snacks or math problems

P.S. Since the large room in the back of the STEM center was open and could handle our numbers very well, we will be moving all future meetings there, hope to see you all there.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Agenda 5/15 Last meeting of the semester! And a note goodbye.

Hey all,

In case you didn't get the memo last week, we scheduled the very last Math Club meeting of the semester at 11:00 AM on Friday, May 15th. Bring your favorite food, your favorite game, your favorite puzzle, or your favorite math problem to share with everyone. 

Anyways. Thanks for hanging out with me every other Friday. It has been fun.


Here's a loose agenda for tomorrow's meeting:

11:00 Food
11:10 Officer election tally... and the winners are...
11:20 Knights and Knaves, and other logic puzzles from my latest midterm review in Discrete Math
11:40 Oragami
11:50 Housekeeping stuff: Does everyone have access to the blog? If not, send me an email so we can make you an author. Everyone should have access.
12:00 Bye!

Friday, May 1, 2015

Math Club Meeting 05/01 Minutes - and link to Officer Election / Constitution Ratification Form

Here is the agenda and 2 problems from Math Club this week:

Click to open in new window / enlarge.
The answer to #1 is Knave-Knight, and the answer to #2 is written on the board under the agenda (it is a number).

We also discussed again officer positions for next semester. Please go to the following link to vote for officer positions and ratify the constitution we worked on a few meetings ago:

Don't forget to submit the constitution by using the responses on the form to submit with the Club Application in Fall 2015- I won't be around to remind you guys, because I got in to Berkeley! Yay!


PS. The next (and final) meeting is at 11:00 AM on Friday, May 15th, 2015. We also decided to schedule 7 meetings for next semester. You can view them on the calendar at the following link:

The first meeting of semester fall 2015 is on Friday, August 17th, 2015 at 11:00 AM in Room 9-253.

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Meeting Minutes 4/17

Hello everyone,

Math Club was cancelled at the last minute last meeting (Becca got the flu), so we spent the meeting for 4/17 using last meeting's agenda.

We played a card game that Diana brought from Brazil called Water Cup, which was pretty fun. The attendees were:

Professor Tong

Vegan cupcakes were made to celebrate Jonathan's birthday.

The problem of the week was brought in by Kye and Diedrik- it was a puzzle from one of their Math Competitions:

Albert and Bernard have just met Cheryl. They want to know when her birthday is.

Cheryl gives them 10 possible dates (see below).

She then tells Albert which month her birthday is in without telling him the day, and tells Bernard which day it is without telling him the month.

Albert says: I don't know when Cheryl's birthday is, but I know that Bernard also does not know.

Bernard says: First, I did not know Cheryl's birthday, but now I know!

Albert says: I too now know her birthday.

When is Cheryl's birthday?

(Here are the 10 possible dates):

May 15
May 16
May 19

June 17
June 18

July 14
July 16

Aug 14
Aug 15
Aug 17

(End of problem).

After giving everyone a chance to work on the problem by themselves, we discussed the solution. The answer is July 16, and it is found through eliminating duplicates using logic based on what the characters Albert and Bernard say.

Next, we voted to have a meeting on May 1st. So, the next 2 meetings are:

Friday, May 1st, 2015
Friday, May 15th, 2015

As usual, the meetings are from 11:30 to 12:30 in room 9-253.

Friday, April 3, 2015

Math Club Meeting Agenda 4/3

Hey everyone,

This is just another friendly reminder that there will be a meeting on Friday, April 3rd (today) in Room 9-253 at 11:30 AM. There will be free food and coffee. Also we are going to play some card games (feel free to bring an extra deck, if you can).

Please remember that this is one of the last meetings of the semester, and since I won't be here next semester (I am transferring), you guys need to be thinking about what Math Club is going to be like in Fall 2015! 

PS. If you are interested in learning more about what being in a club is all about, feel free to attend one of the Inter Club Council meetings! The next one is held on Tuesday, April 7th at 3:15 in "the Clubhouse," which is near the Career Center inside the Grove. 




11:00 Pre-Meeting Set-up with Becca! (getting food & coffee)
11:30 Meeting Begins (overview of meeting stuff)
11:35 Problem of the Week
12:00 Card games
12:30 End of meeting

Next meeting: Friday, April 17th, 2015 at 11:30 in 9-253. 

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Math Club Meeting Agenda 3/20

Subject: Official Math Club Meeting
Date: Friday, March 20th, 2015
Time: 9:00am-1:30pm(see below)
Location: STEM Center - room 9-253 and center area

   9:00-10:00 Club Business*
10:00-11:00 (Becca runs a precalc tutoring group in room 9-254)
11:00-11:30 MESA Math Challenge Prep (optional)
11:30- 1:00 MESA Math Challenge (11:30-1:00)
  1:00-1:30 meeting continues: Problem of the Week
  1:30 meeting ends

Please come, if you can, before the MESA Math Challenge to discuss some much-needed club business!!! And continue to be on the look out for cool math problems. There are so many, I can't possibly find them all. Stay after the MESA Math Challenge to work on Problem of the Week.

Thanks, guys. - Becca

*Club Business (we STILL need to talk about these things!):

ICC meeting update - what's the news on club politics?
Club naming - what is it???
Having fun - picnic in the Quad idea?
Math education research - are we still doing that?
Berkeley - how was it for you?
Did you find any cool math problems?

Friday, March 13, 2015

MESA Math Challenge, 3/20 - Edit: EVENT TIME UPDATED

Important update: 

The time of the MESA Math Challenge has been changed! We are now scheduled to begin at 11:30, which means we need to push the Math Club meeting to 10:00! Check out the explanation 

Help Fund the $1000 Math Club Scholarship

Feel free to print this out and post it around town. We need all the support we can get! 

Link to PDF document in Google Drive: 

Share this link on your social media sites to get the ball rolling:

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Pi Day (3.14.15)

Upcoming event: Pi Day
Date: Sunday, March 14, 2015 (3.14.15)

There are a couple of different things we can do in San Francisco to celebrate Pi Day. Here are a few of the events we will be visiting during the day. Please feel free to add to this list either by editing the post or leaving a comment in the section below.

Pi Day Pie Potluck

Location: Folio Books, San Francisco
Time: 1:30-2:30
Details: Come eat pie and test your math trivia skills. Bring a pie to share and get 20% off your purchase (of a book).
Cost: free
RSVP: Optional

Source: Pillsbury. Used for educational purposes.

27th Annual Pi Day: Exploratorium Free Day

Location: Pier 15, San Francisco
Time: All day (10am to 5pm)
Details: Join The Exploratorium on Friday, March 14, 2015 for the 27th annual Pi Day, an international holiday celebrating the never-ending number π (3.14159…), and the spirit of wonder and quirk that science inspires, founded in 1988 by Exploratorium physicist and “Prince of Pi” Larry Shaw.
Cost: free

UC Berkeley Shadow Day

Upcoming event: UC Berkeley Shadow Day
Time: 9am - 5pm
Date: Saturday, March 7th, 2015

Meet Becca at the Milbrae BART station around 7:20. We will take the 7:41 BART train, transfer lines at Richmond, and arrive at the Downtown Berkeley Station at 8:43AM. From there, it's a short walk to the campus.

Parking at Milbrae BART requires a $2.00 fee. Or, get a ride with Becca. That's right- I'm driving! :)

Also, your round trip ticket will be $10.20, and if you want to be fed, you will need to bring $6 in cash. (Total trip cost is $16.20).

BART Schedule:

(Source: BART Trip Planner.)

Bart Ticket:


Email info:

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Meeting "Minutes" 2/20

Another meeting "minutes" are here!


We spent large amount of time solving pretty cool problem from Becca's class. It was logical type of problem.  In short, problem was: We were prisoners and we have to choose from two doors, which one we open. Behind one of the doors was gold and tiger behind another. We worked together and we survived!

 Random Activities

We discussed which type of problems should be solved at the meetings. Another discussion was about activities inside and outside the math club. If you have some idea what you want to do, do not hesitate and voice your idea on meeting! :) 


Infinite Possibilities Conference 2015 in March 1-3, 2015 at Oregon State University  (Corvallis, Oregon) is almost here! If you are coming don't forget book your Hotel, review the schedule, etc.  

Attendance: Diana, Marie, Becca, JR and prof. Tong 

Math Club's next meeting is Friday, March 6th, at 11:30-12:30 in room 9-253.

see you, M.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Research Committee Meeting 2/20

Research Committee Meeting
Date: Friday, February 20th, 2015 (after Math Club)
Time: 1:00PM-2:00PM

Purpose: Establish a timeline and a formal research question

1:00 Overview of entire research process for data research to paper  publication / poster session
1:10 Establish a timeline based on overview
1:20 Establish a research question: What do we want to know? What are our goals? What are our motivations?

Homework for next week:
Begin reviewing published literature on the subject (research journal publications, etc.)

Next meeting (Friday, February 27th, 11:30-12:30):
Discuss a survey method (survey questions, target population, sample size, eliminating bias)
Discuss data analysis- what questions should we ask get the right kind if data?
Discuss contacting a Data Analysis mentor from industry with connections to Math Club

2/20 Meeting Agenda

Date: Friday, February 20th, 2015
Time: 11:30AM-1:00PM

Math (11:30-12:30)
Problem of the Week
New Math Topic: Logic

Business (12:30-1:00)
ICC Update
"Giving Tree" Award
"Sugar Torus" Fundraiser
Fundraiser forms
Reimbursement forms
Constitution drafting
*Edit 2/19: Math Olympics in March!

*Research Committee Meeting (1:00-2:00)
Purpose: Timeline and Research Question
Agenda TBA
*IPC Attendees Meeting (2:00-3:00)
Purpose: IPC travel and hotel plans
Agenda TBA

Change: Research Committee Meeting Postponed Until Next Week!

Hi there,

I just wanted to make a post to let everyone know that the Research Committee Meeting at Starbucks that was scheduled for Friday 2/13 has been postponed until next week after the club meeting, which is Friday, February 20th, 11:30AM-12:30PM in room 9-253.

If you would like to volunteer to being snacks this week, please do so! Our thanks go out to Diedrik and his dad for bringing the goods last time.

Expect an agenda to be posted around the end of the long weekend. Enjoy your break!

Math Club President

Monday, February 9, 2015

Upcoming Events of the Week (Math Club-related!)

Upcoming Events:

Wednesday 2/11: STEM Speakers Series in Building 6, 5-6pm. 

Thursday 2/12: Club Rush - Diana, Marie, and Becca are going to start raising funds for the $1000 Math Club Scholarship by selling donuts in-between our classes, so you should come! (fundraising guidelines can be found here). 

Friday 2/13: Holiday (no school), Math Club Research Committee Meets at Starbucks in Sequoia Station, Redwood City, 11:30-12:30. 

Monday 2/16: Holiday (no school), LAST DAY TO DROP A CLASS  WITHOUT A W.

Tuesday 2/17: First Inter Club Council Meeting (If you can, please join Diana at 2:15pm in Building 5, Room 350 to represent Math Club!)

PS: Get your Spring Semester Student ID Card ASAP! You MUST have an ID card to participate.

Friday, February 6, 2015

2/6 Meeting Minutes

Second meeting in this semester is over and here are meeting "minutes":

"PoW" - Problem of The Week

This time we had to deal with problem called PICK'S FORMULA. At first we tried (successfully) to find formula for the area of a geoboard polygon. Than we tried to prove this formula. For the lack of time we didn't finish this task and we will probably work on this next meeting. 

Proving Pick's Formula

examplePick's formula is a great topic for student exploration, but why does it work?

Henri Picciotto

Solution and background info:
We will call simple polygons (no crossing, no holes) with vertices on lattice points geoboard polygons. Pick's formula for the area of a geoboard polygon is A = I + B/2 – 1, where A = area, I = interior lattice points, and B = boundary lattice points.
For example, in the figure above, the quadrilateral has I = 7; and B = 5, so the area should be 8.5.
You can confirm this is correct by subtracting the area of three right triangles from the area of the enclosing rectangle.
 (Source: )

 Cool version of factoring 

 After "PoW" we moved to factoring. Becca showed cool, for some of us new, factoring method.

(Source: )

Spring 2015 Activities 

We also discussed upcoming activities such as: Infinite Possibilities Conference (IPC) (March 1 - 3), MAA Meeting at Foothill (February 28), and "Club" Day which is here on campus Thursday, February 12.

The rest of our meeting was dedicated to Club Training and Application Update (Club Information, Club Activity form).


Proposition: Math Club should raise funds for the Math Club scholarship by hosting a Texas Hold 'em tournament party with suggested donations. Greg has agreed to teach members how to play Texas Hold 'em and will be in charge of planning for this event.
Votes: Yes: 4  No: 0

Leadership Roles:
President: Rebecca (4)
Treasurer: Diana (4), Jonathan (1)
Club Secretary: Marie (4)
ICC Liaison: Diana (4)

Attendance: Diana, Diedrik, Diedrik's dad, Marie, Becca, prof. Hoffman, and prof. Tong

Math Club's next meeting is Friday, February 20th, at 11:30-12:30 in room 9-253.

see you, M.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Meeting Agenda 2/6

Math Club Meeting Agenda:

Friday, February 6th, 2015
11:30 AM-1:00 PM *** Room 9-253
***Note: Longer meeting because of club application.

11:30 People arrive, watch short math video
  • Secretary takes attendance
11:40 Introductions
  • Hi, my name is…
  • My favorite factoring method is...
11:45 Problem of the Week (PoW)
12:10 Useful Math: Factoring 101
12:30 Green Binder Time
  • Club Training
1:00 End of meeting

After the meeting: Research meeting (ACES Committee) at 2:30-5:30. Ask Professor Hoffman for more info.

Updated Calendar:*

*I've highlighted the first ICC Meeting in blue. Mandatory attendance for ICC Liaison (other people can attend if they want, though. Unfortunately, I have a class at that time).

Saturday, January 24, 2015

1/23 Meeting Minutes

Welcome to Math Club, spring 2015! Here are last meeting's "minutes"- in other words, the things we did and discussed last meeting:


Math Club invited last semester's members and all the math majors who attended last semester's Speaker Series. Out of that group, the people who attended the meeting are:

Rebecca (myself)
Jonathan M.
Diedrik's Dad
Marie K.
Professor Hoffman
Greg T.
Matt J.

... and several other students. Typically, we have the secretary take attendance, but since that position is now open, Rebecca took the attendance, and seems to have misplaced it. I know that at least one other person attended the first Math Club meeting- if you are not on the above list, please email me as soon as you can so I can edit these minutes.

--01/29 Update: here is the official attendance list taken at the meeting:

Also, I would appreciate it if everyone interested in participating in Math Club fill out the following membership application:

Thank you for taking the time to fill out that form. Let's continue with the meeting minutes.

Problem of the week:

This problem came from the AMC 8 2010 and can be found here with a detailed solution. 

We solved the problem together on the board:

If anybody has any questions about how we solved this problem, please email me at and I would be glad to go over it again next meeting. Thanks to Professor Tong, Math Club's other advisor, we have another awesome math problem / activity planned for next meeting. So please join us on Friday, February 6th in 9-253. 

Infinite Possibilities Conference (IPC):

Professor Hoffman talked about IPC, the conference Math Club wants to go to this semester. The due date for registration is Friday, January 30th (next week!!!). The conference is March 1-3, so you will have to miss a little bit of class. However, Professor Hoffman guarantees that he will vouch for you to your professors! So don't worry about that. We hope to get funding to pay for student registration, which is $50. 

Meanwhile, Marie has offered to provide transportation for a few students, which is awesome!

Math Club Scholarship:

The Math Club Scholarship has traditionally given awards totaling to $1,000 at the Leadership Awards Ceremony, which is towards the end of the semester, in around April. Last year, Rebecca received an award! Basically, a panel judges students who apply based on their leadership, participation, and attendance to math-related activities at the STEM Center, like Math Club and tutoring. Application for this scholarship and many others is done through the Canada College scholarship application, which I believe can be accessed here. The due date is early this year, so please start applying now! It requires a personal statement and a letter of recommendation. 


In order to make sure that the Math Club Scholarship, as well as other leadership awards, can even happen at all, many of the awards are based on student fundraising. Math Club has typically tried to achieve $1000 in scholarship through fundraising. Over the next few meetings, we need to work out some fundraising details! 

Member Greg Trimble has a fundraising idea: he proposes that Math Club should host a Texas Hold 'em Tournament with suggested donations for people to attend. He has agreed to teach members and attendees how to play and the mathematics behind Texas Hold 'em probability. All members interested should vote here: 

Thanks for voting! Voting results will be published by next meeting, February 6th.

Leadership Positions:

There are several leadership options available to people interested in having more power in Math Club:
-ICC (Inter Club Council) Liaison *Most Important Position

Diana wants to be Treasurer and ICC Liaison (we need to confirm with the ASCC that she can be both).

The Treasurer is responsible for printing, completing, and signing ASCC club forms related to running student clubs, getting them signed by one of our advisors, and submitting them to the ASCC Office (AKA the Center of Student Life), which is located in the Grove (the cafeteria on campus). The Treasurer is also responsible for handling and collecting any money made by the club through donations or fundraising, filling out the appropriate ASCC form for it, and submitting it to the Cashier's Office under the Math Club's account (the Cashier's Office is located on the 1st floor of building 9, directly below the Learning Center).

The ICC Liaison is responsible for attending ICC Meetings, which are held every other Tuesday at 2:15 PM - 3:15 PM in the Center for Student Life in the Grove, beginning Tuesday, February 10th, at 2:15PM. As ICC Liaison, you must take notes on the ICC proceedings, and bring that information to Math Club on our Friday Meetings, which occur on Fridays of the following week. ICC is extremely important, and so remember to tell us what's going on there!

Marie wants to be Secretary.

If she takes the Secretary position, she will be in charge of recording attendance and member info (names, phone numbers, g-numbers) and keeping the blog up to date, with Rebecca's help.

Jonathan is interested in being Treasurer, but less so than Diana. Jesus L. was last semester's Treasurer, so he may be interested in taking the position again.

Rebecca is acting is Club President since Try stepped down last semester. If you are interested in being club president, please talk to Rebecca, so that we can see what we can do about that. At this time, no one has opted to do so, but we need someone to take over by Fall 2015, when the current President graduates. Let me know if you are interested!

Since we are a student club, we have to vote to elect positions. Please fill out the following form to elect members to their positions. People who have been elected will be emailed next week with more instructions on how to fulfill their roles as club officers. Until then, I suggest that you read about the ASCC, ICC, and general club information on Canada College's website.

Thanks for voting! We appreciating your participation. Everyone who participates in Math Club, even if you do not want an officer position, are making the club more fun and amazing. Thank you so much!

Math Club's next meeting is Friday, February 6th, at 11:30-12:30 in room 9-253. I will post an agenda for the meeting on Monday evening.

Again, you can view a tentative semester-long calendar of events on the previous blog post located here. Below, I've embedded a live, continuously updated calendar of Math Club's events for the rest of the semester (it contains the same information, just in a calendar, instead of a list). You can use the arrows to scroll through each month. This calendar is also on the side bar of the blog home page.


Thursday, January 22, 2015

Spring 2015 Tentative Calendar

  • Green times indicate regular, official Math Club meetings. 
  • ACES Meetings (red) are for students interested in continuing last semester's research project on Inequality in Math Education.
  • Gray are tentative, idea-stage  events.
  • Yellow is the conference of the semester, IPC 2015.