University of Minnesota

Mathematics Student Profile

Name: Di Wu
Anticipated Graduation Year:
May 2015
Hometown: Chengdu, Sichuan, China

How and why did you choose your major?

When I first entered the school, I was a computer science major student. When I studied it, I found that it needed sophisticated math skills and one of my favorite professors had a math major background. So the second semester, I took more math courses including the introduction to modern algebra which changed my mind about my major. After that, I changed my major into math which I believed that it was about truth and useful for lots of areas, such as computer science, physics and economics. I took econometric course too and found that my professor's undergraduate major was math too. I love thinking, challenges and communication. So after I transferred to U, I declared a specialization as actuarial science where I can put my math skills into practice.

Please give a description (in your words) of your major including the things you learn, favorite classes, and any challenges you have faced.

The most important thing that I have learned about my major is thinking logically. I have learned the theory of interest, stochastic process, ordinary differential equations, advanced algebra, modern algebra, topology, mathematical analysis, real analysis, complex analysis, and so on. Until now, my favorite class is stochastic process because this is useful course and I love the professor Yang. Challenges always happen when I pursue math major like topology course which can be very abstract. How to go through it? My experience is thinking more and working hard.

What types of experiences outside of the classroom have you had relating to your major? (i.e. clubs, jobs, internships, volunteering, study abroad etc.)

I joined the actuarial club which was related to my major and provided really good resources about careers. I also had a tutor experience about teaching four high school students which gave me a great sense of accomplishment. I love teaching too.

In your opinion, what is one thing, or one piece of advice that other students pursuing your major should know?

If you want to pursue math major, you need a strong confidence to overcome the difficulty and have passion about it.

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