Computational Science Coursework and
Internships:

Applying Mathematics and Computer
Science to Important Scientific Problems

Angela Shiflet

shifletab@wofford.edu

http://www.wofford.edu/ecs/

Wofford College

Spartanburg, South Carolina

Many significant scientific research
questions are interdisciplinary in nature, involving biological and/or physical
sciences, mathematics, and computer science in an area called
"computational science"; and much scientific investigation now
involves computing as well as theory and experiment. Consequently, a critical need exists for
scientists to know how to use computation in their work. With an appropriate foundation in mathematics
and computer science, science majors can perform meaningful interdisciplinary
research in internships, graduate school, and post-graduate positions. Internships involving computation in the
sciences can expose undergraduates to many new ideas, techniques, and
applications that can greatly enhance their knowledge, make their classroom
education more meaningful, involve them in research on significant scientific
problems, and expand their opportunities.
Working at various laboratories, students have applied techniques of
modeling and simulation to significant scientific problems, such as determining
biochemical pathways associated with vascular disease, correlating birth
defects to diet, discovering heart mechanics in order to treat cardiac disease,
tracking asteroids, and developing strategies to combat Chagas’
disease. Besides citing particular
student experiences, this talk will include coursework and internship
recommendations from "Undergraduate Computational Science and Engineering
Education," a report from a Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics
(SIAM) Working Group of which Dr. Shiflet is a member.