Bakersfield College Math Students

At the 2004 MAA Southern California Spring Meeting


Three Bakersfield College Math Students presented poster projects at the Mathematical Association of America (MAA) Southern California Spring Meeting at San Diego University on March 6, 2004.Bakersfield College accounted for five of the 30 poster projects and was the only community college that had students participate in the session.Other participants were from CSUís, UCís, and four-year private colleges.

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The Ozone Zone

Samer Albadawi and Hesham Hussain


Hesham and Sam are explaining their project to a conference attendee.

In this project, we investigated whether the ozone hole is healing or not.This study has been done using data that has been collected from reliable resources.By plotting the zone lost in Dobson units versus time, we derived several equations using a variety of mathematical means.Looking at the area of the ozone hole was not enough to understand its behavior, so we considered the thickness of the ozone layer.

Faculty Advisor:Becky Head






Why Donít My Students Come To Class Everyday?

Jane Marie L. Ansolabehere

Jane Marie and Tom Greenwood

Adult ESL student attendance is often irregular.This leads to many frustrating moments for the teacher and the students.Why do adult students miss class so often?Which students miss class and/or drop most often?The presenter will discuss the results of a study she conducted to find the answers to these questions.She will show how data on studentsí educational backgrounds, work schedules and family lives correlate with their attendance/attrition, and, in turn, their CASAS post-test scores.Studentsí self-reported reasons for absences and drops will also be included in the discussion.

Faculty advisors:Tom Greenwood and Becky Head



The Mathematics of Roller Coasters

Derek Brown

Becky Head and Derek Brown


Roller coasters are exciting contraptions full of loops, curls, and extreme g-forces.This project models a roller coaster by using fundamentals of physics, differential equations, linear algebra, and calculus.I designed my own coaster incorporating a drop and a loop.Using the path I derived for the coaster, I calculated maximum velocity and acceleration.

Faculty advisor:Becky Head


Derekís project won the first place award of Best Project.




Itís All Relative, with Ion Engines
Ray Direito


Ion engines are the propulsion systems of tomorrow.Using data from the ion engine systems of Deep Space One and math from various levels, I will compare and contrast the Newtonian and the relativistic methods to calculate the time to reach 200,000 km/sec, and show when the two methods become noticeably different.

Faculty advisors:Rebecca Head, Rick Darke, and Liz Rozell



Ray Direito and Guest




Minimum Arc Lengths on a Doughnut

Leesa Hansen and Rosanna Haut

Rosanna, Leesa and Arnie


The purpose of this project is to determine whether ants will find the shortest path from one side of a doughnut to the other.Data was gathered by placing a plastic doughnut between the antsí nest and sugar water.Points from the ant trail were used to generate an equation in 3D of their path.The arc length of this equation was then compared to that of other possible paths.

Faculty advisor:Ararat Andrasian