# Alumni Spotlights

## Nate Burch

Nathanial Burch is an Assistant Professor of Mathematics at Gonzaga
University in Spokane, WA. Nate teaches three courses each semester
and remains active in research and other scholarly activities. After
graduating from Grand Valley in 2006 with a mathematics major and
statistics minor, Nate completed an MSc in mathematics (2008), an MSc
in statistics (2009), and a PhD in mathematics (2011) from Colorado
State University. The skill that Nate developed as an undergraduate at
GVSU that has been most valuable to him was the ability to investigate
and then formulate (in mathematical terms) a broad range of problems
from different applications. The subsequent ability to solve such a
problem from various viewpoints and communicate the findings to
interested non-mathematicians was a skill that Nate honed during
graduate school.

The courses that Nate took at GVSU that he found to be
particularly valuable in graduate school and in shaping his research
interests include MTH 405 (Numerical Analysis), MTH 408 (Advanced
Calculus I), MTH 227 and MTH 327 (Linear Algebra I and II), and STA
312 (Probability and Statistics).

Nate suggests that a mathematics major should consider
participating in undergraduate workshops and conferences (which often
offer free travel and are great, formative experiences) and/or summer
internships. Additionally, he encourages mathematics majors to gain a
broad perspective of mathematics by taking as many math and related
science classes as they can, reaching out to former GVSU alumni that
hold jobs/careers they are currently interested in, and embracing the
(many) applications of mathematics early and often.