SWIM -- Women in Mathematics -- Summer Workshop for High School Students is a 10-day workshop seeking to retain talented female students, and to encourage them to pursue a career in science and mathematics, at the crucial transition point from high school to college. The SWIM program brings together talented students in an intense workshop in which they learn, earlier than is typically the case, advanced mathematical topics, and work on their own research project. It aims to showcase mathematics as a "living discipline", to stimulate the intellectual curiosity of the participants, and to convey enthusiasm for the subject. By bringing together as a group female high school students with a strong talent for mathematics, to study and work together, and introducing them to female role models at further stages in a mathematical career, the SWIM program encourages these students to consider such a mathematical career for themselves.

Participants in the program are predominantly "rising seniors". They are recruited countrywide, and selected on the basis of their mathematical talent. The morning sessions of the workshop consist of two courses, which are more advanced and of a different nature than typical high school courses. In the afternoon, groups of two to three participants work together on small research projects based on the material of the courses. At the end of each afternoon all the participants meet for a "Women in Mathematics" seminar, introducing the participants to a variety of women who chose to pursue a career in mathematics, and discussing a wide range of issues with them. Throughout the workshop the participants interact with undergraduate students, graduate students and faculty of the Mathematics Department; they are housed in one of the colleges on campus and thus get a glimpse of life as an undergraduate student.

Project Report

" at Princeton, June 16 - 25, 2010 brought together 25 female high school juniors for an intense 10-day workshop in which they learned advanced mathematical topics, and worked on their own research project. The workshop showcased mathematics as a ``living discipline'', stimulated the intellectual curiosity of the participants, and communicated enthusiasm for mathematics to them. The main goal of workshop was to retain talented female students at the transition point from high school to college, and to encourage them to pursue a career in science and mathematics as they enter college. The participants were recruited nationwide and selected on the basis of their mathematical talent, as illustrated by their answers to mathematical problems posted on the programs website. Through the active participation and involvement of female undergraduate and graduate students as well as female faculty in mathematics, the participants had ample opportunities to interact with role models at very different stages in their career in mathematics. A second goal of the workshop was two provide encouragement and reinforcement for the female undergraduate and graduate students who were involved as instructors, teaching assistants and counselors. Both goals were achieved, participants and counselors were equally enthusiastic on the experiences and opportunities they had through this workshop. Further information is available from the workshops website www.math.princeton.edu/swim/SWIM 2010/.

National Science Foundation (NSF)
Division of Mathematical Sciences (DMS)
Standard Grant (Standard)
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Program Officer
Dean Evasius
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Princeton University
United States
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