In this blog post, we have asked Martina Mera, BSc Mathematics student at the School of Mathematical Sciences, to answer a few questions on her degree. She also discussed her role in the Teaching and Learning Committee as well as her Research Experience for Undergraduates in Moscow.
What made you choose to study BSc Mathematics at Queen Mary University of London?
After a semester spent in Ireland when I was in high school, studying in the UK became my dream. At that time, I knew some people from Italy, my native country, who had studied in London but apparently mathematics wasn’t a popular subject to study. Since nobody I knew studied mathematics, I had to find information on my own and what drew my attention to Queen Mary was the vibrant and proactive community, the high level of research and the team of professors.
How did your passion for mathematics begin?
During high school, I was interested in chemistry and biology rather than mathematics or physics. Year after year, I realised that what I loved the most was not the study of nature but the study of the laws that control it, instead. My Maths teacher also encouraged me and made me eager to develop the applications of the scientific method on real-life problems.
What do you enjoy the most about your degree?
I find my BSc Mathematics degree to be relatively dynamic and, after the first year, I have had the opportunity to choose the modules I really want to study so I can build my study plan based on what I plan to focus on in the future. What I enjoy the most are the modules related to Mathematical Physics: Dynamical Systems and Differential Equations. I do love Geometry and Analysis too.
Can you tell us a bit more about the Research Experience for Undergraduates in Moscow, that you’ve recently been awarded?
The Research Experience for Undergraduates at the HSE in Moscow is a summer programme which gives young students the opportunity to face the research environment and to work on their own on a research project. There is also one-to-one supervision from distinguished Moscow mathematicians from the HSE University Faculty of Mathematics or the Steklov Mathematical Institute. When I applied, I never expected a positive answer, since the programme is very competitive. I simply forgot about it until I received the email saying I got in.
What was your experience being part of the Teaching and Learning Committee? What did you learn from it?
The Teaching and Learning Committee is a powerful tool for students to have a say. I am glad that our lecturers are curious to know our opinions and our thoughts. They could simply make decisions without us, but they care about student participation instead. This is what the word “collaboration” means to me. I had the chance to speak in public about what I did and I did not agree on. I have always received positive feedback and corrections.
What are your plans for the future?
Drawing from the experiences I had in the past years, I have striven to combine my academic studies with my desire to work in international environments; in this sense, the common denominator in the activities I engaged in has always been the drive to deeply comprehend the subject I studied. I would love to gain further knowledge in academia and to critically develop new personal and academic skills.
Would you like to find out more about BSc Mathematics and other degrees at the School of Mathematical Sciences? Click here.