Personal History Statement

University of California - Santa Cruz, Jack Baskin School of Engineering Department of Applied Mathematics and Statistics

Degree Objective: Ph.D. in Applied Mathematics

Mathematics and violin are the only two things could make me feel peaceful. I don’t want to say how much I love mathematics or how hard I have worked in order for the university to offer me the admission. It is a little hectic to exaggerate a discipline you aim to research. How about just say something about myself and my understanding of mathematics?

Mathematics seems ambiguous to many people around me. Kids who are good at learning or practicing mathematical problems are usually regarded as smart, gifted or even genius. Unfortunately,

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The base of the natural logarithm enlightened me begin to believe that mathematics is a unique language to illustrate the mechanism behind the universe and I also raised an eagerness to understand the world through mathematics. Such faith also encouraged me to choose mathematics as my undergraduate major with no hesitation. Mathematics helped me a lot during my high school, not for the grade, but for my mind.

As an undergraduate student majored in mathematics, I had the opportunity to be exposed to the large range of mathematical courses and systematic logical thinking training. The book which influenced me most during my college time is not the classical analysis or algebra textbooks, but is “What is Mathematics?” written by Dr. Courant. That book gave me another prospective of the structures of mathematics and strengthened my mind to pursue a master’s degree in

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That is the first time I acknowledge what applied mathematics could be used. Unlike my classmates, who went working in financial companies after graduation. I was referred to the department of mathematical science at RPI by two professors. During my graduate study of applied mathematics, I came up with a problem that puzzled my about two weeks. That was because of the Fourier Analysis in my PDE course, I used to directly use the method and series to solve questions, but I never thought about the inside question: Why so many phenomenon in our living word could be describe by the Fourier Series, such as the selection of the period, seems everything in the world is periodical, human being have the periodic from birth to death and even earth has overlapping seasons. Is mathematical already existed or invented by human? I went to my instructor, Dr. David Isaacson, he seems had the same question when he was a young Ph.D. candidate and we had almost three hours talk. The world is so sophisticated, it contains rules that human beings could not even change slightly. Why the flowers in the natural have specific instead of randomly petals? Why the maximum increase ratio of creatures is the “e”? Is there a God who