Recruiting Workshop: Picture Hanging Puzzles

Today was Math Day at UNI. This is a big event where the department invites lots of prospective students with strong records and declared interest in some flavor of mathematics major to come visit and be amazed by how awesome we are. The day includes a fancy lunch, and (for the students) a little test used as part of scholarship screening, some activities with faculty members, (and for the parents) discussion of financial aid, presentations on possible career choices, and a campus tour.

I ran a short workshop (activity?) for prospective students. I have done this for five years running, now, and I am starting to build up a repertoire of fun demonstrations and investigations for dealing with a students with a high school background. I like to use topology topics because there are lots of mind-bending things one can do with no background: ideas that are interesting, immediately understandable, and hands-on.

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