Mathematics on the Northern Plains Undergraduate Conference

The Froiland Science Complex at Augustana University

Event Details

Date: April 8, 2017

Times: 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Location: Froiland Science Complex at Augustana University in Sioux Falls, South Dakota

Ticket Info: Registration is required.

Augustana is hosting the 18th annual Mathematics on the Northern Plains Undergraduate Conference on Saturday, April 8. At this conference, undergraduates have an opportunity to present results of their mathematical research or projects, in the form of 20-minute talks or with posters. Activities include student presentations, an invited talk, lunch, a Math Jeopardy, and a discussion about Opportunities in Mathematics.

Program Schedule

  • View the program schedule (.pdf format).
  • Keynote address by Dr. Jesse Berwald (Senior Data Scientist — Target) on "High-dimensional Retail": Modern industrial problems often take place in high-dimensional spaces with very sparse data from a wide array of sources. Mathematics provides the keys to answering the more difficult questions encountered in elegant ways. Nevertheless, there is constant tension between accuracy and speed. Through a number of examples, we will discuss both the mathematical and computational challenges inherent in developing products in the context of “big data.”


Registration ended on Friday, March 31. Due to the support of Augustana University, and the generosity of the invited speakers, our costs for the conference this year have been kept modest, despite no longer having past sources of funding.

To defray the remaining costs, we must ask for a $10 registration fee per attendee. Pre-payment is appreciated, though on-site payment is acceptable for those who have registered by the deadline. Payment may be cash or via check payable to Augustana University with the memo line reading “MNP Math Conference."

Checks may be mailed to:

Dr. Carl Olimb
Augustana University
2001 S Summit Ave, Sioux Falls, SD 57197


Please visit for hotel options.

Campus Map/Directions

The conference will be taking place in the Froiland Science Complex. Free parking is available as shown.

Bio of Keynote Speaker

Dr. Jesse Berwald (Senior Data Scientist — Target) will speak at 8:30 - 9:30 a.m. in Froiland Science Complex (FSC) 113

As part of a team at Target with deep industry knowledge, Dr. Berwald develops best-in-class machine learning algorithms in an omnichannel environment. His work involves predictive analytics, natural language processing, deep learning for visual and text sentiment analysis, topological data analysis, and old-fashioned data wrangling using a full, open-source stack. Prior to joining Target, Dr. Berwald held many research positions including: Post Doctoral Fellow at the Institute for Mathematics and its Applications (IMA), Post Doctoral Researcher at the College of William and Mary, graduate research and teaching positions at Montana State University at Bozeman, Sandia National Laboratories and Los Alamos National Laboratories. He also worked at IBM for three years as a software engineer. Dr. Berwald received his doctorate in mathematics from Montana State University at Bozeman and his bachelor of science degree in mathematics at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.


Dr. Carl Olimb
Math Department
Augustana University
Sioux Falls, SD 57197