Skip to main content

Alumni Day

CB 122
Speaker(s) / Presenter(s):
Kasey Bray 2019 "An Unexpected Journey Back to High School"; Fernando Camacho 2014, "A Mathematician in a Multidisciplinary Team"; Luis Sordo Vieira 2017 "Immerse in the Diverse: How Hedging Your Bets in Grad School and Postdoc Can Lead to Exciting Oppor

Annual Graduate Alumni Day

Friday, March 22, 2024

2:00-5:30 P.M.

White Hall Classroom Building 122 (CB 122)

2:00 - 2:50 pm Immerse in the diverse: how hedging your bets in grad school and postdoc can lead to exciting opportunities

Luis Sordo Vieira, University of Florida

After completing my Ph.D. in number theory, I decided I wanted to completely shift my career and use mathematics and my training to better understand human disease. In this talk, I will outline how I came to this decision, what I did to facilitate the transition, and highlight the importance of mentorship and networking in the process. Moreover, I will talk about what it is like to work in a clinical environment and the importance of putting yourself in places that are completely unknown to you.

3:00 - 3:50 pm An Unexpected Journey Back to High School

Kasey Bray, Montgomery Bell Academy

Telling someone you study math typically garners one of two responses: apathy and resentment for the subject; or, confusion about the practicality of such a degree. Perhaps you can relate to consoling those expressing sentiments like "I am so bad at math;" or perfecting a spiel explaining the multitude of career options for mathematicians to those opining "So you're going to be a teacher." The latter was my least favorite of the two responses, in large part because I never aspired to teach. Yet here I am, teaching math at all-boys independent high school...and enjoying it much more than my former self would ever care to admit. In this talk we will discuss how I got here, the unique ins-and-outs of working in an independent school, and why it's a path worth considering.

4:30 - 5:20 pm A mathematician in a multidisciplinary team

Fernando Camacho, Department of Defense (NSA)

Mathematics provides you with a powerful language to understand the world, solve problems, and communicate abstract concepts. These skills are highly valued by employers. In this talk, we will see how a Math degree can help you while doing research for the DoD. I will also mention other important skills that can help make the transition from academia to industry easier.


LUIS SORDO VIEIRA, University of Florida

Luis Sordo Vieira received his Ph.D. in 2017 in number theory working with Dr. David Leep. While at the University of Kentucky, he received the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship in 2013. He then transitioned to systems biology, completing postdoctoral training at UConn Health and the Jackson Laboratory for Genomic Medicine. He is now an Assistant Professor in the Department of Medicine at the University of Florida and is funded by a Career Development Award from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases to study the role of the innate immune system in lung infections using a combination of mathematical modeling and experimental work.

KASEY BRAY, Montgomery Bell Academy

A two-time graduate of Texas Tech University (BS, MS), Kasey Bray earned her PhD from the University of Kentucky in 2019. Under the leadership of Qiang Ye, she studied numerical methods for solving large scale linear systems and, specifically, the role of ill-conditioning in such algorithms. After graduation Kasey moved to Nashville, TN where she now works at Montgomery Bell Academy, an independent college preparatory school. While she fills several athletic and academic extracurricular roles at the school, her primary responsibility is teaching AP Calculus. Outside of work, Kasey enjoys tending to the chickens, practicing yoga, and watching trash television with friends.

FERNANDO CAMACHO, Department of Defense (NSA)

Dr. Camacho holds an undergraduate degree in Mechanical and Electrical Engineering and earned his PhD in Mathematics, specializing in Numerical Analysis and Partial Differential Equations, from the University of Kentucky. Dr. Camacho enjoys interdisciplinary research, which is why, while completing his PhD, he also joined the University of Kentucky's College of Engineering, where he earned graduate credits in Computational Fluid Dynamics, Nonlinear Systems, and Machine Learning. Currently, Dr. Camacho is a researcher at the Laboratory for Physical Sciences where he works on developing AI/ML models for edge-computing applications.