Former student of our circle?

Send us your info!

You can help the math circle! We'd like to keep track of our students' lives and achievements, to learn how well our circle has done its job!
If you've been involed with SJMC we'd love it if you would send us a short description of who you are, your achievements, how has the math circle helped you, etc.
Send an email to with the information, whether you want us to publish it in our Alumni Gallery or keep it confidential.

Our Alumni Gallery

Below is the gallery of students that have been involved with the math circle in the past, along with a short description for each student.
Some of our alumni may be contacted by current students! Look for the blue info(I) image after their description (like on the right of this text).

Joshua Batson

Joshua Batson 01Josh is currently a senior at Yale University, finishing up his BA in math, continuing the long journey that began at the San Jose Math Circle. Since middle school, when he attended the Math Circle with his Mathcounts teammates (including Tiankai Liu, a fellow member of the victorious California state team), he has been interested in competitions. Taking the USAMO for four years in high school led him twice to the MOSP, the summer training camp for the US IMO team, where he was joined by many other Circle alumni (Tiankai Liu, Jongmin Baek, and Jichao Qian, to name a few). At Yale, he took the Putnam Competition (see problems here), garnering an honorable mention. Last summer, he attended a Research Experience for Undergraduates at the University of Minnesota, Duluth, where he researched problems in additive number theory. He subsequently wrote a paper which he has submitted to the Journal of Number Theory for publication. Josh plans to attend Cambridge next year to begin graduate study in pure mathematics.
The SJ Math Circle was a great place to learn fascinating mathematics and meet other people excited about it. It helped him to see the rich world lying outside of the standard curriculum, and helped him develop a real passion for math.
Want to contact Josh?
(Note: please, only students involved with the circle) If you would like to ask Josh any questions, feel free to email him at joshuab [at]

Jennifer Hsieh

Jennifer Hsieh 01Jennifer writes: "I graduated from Harvard in 2004 with a BA in Chemistry and Physics. During my undergraduate years, I did a lot of research in many different areas under several well-known researchers (Doug Osheroff at Stanford, John Rogers at Bell Laboratories, James Hone at Columbia, Christi Madsen at Bell Laboratories, and Eric Mazur at Harvard). I had so much fun that I decided to go to graduate school. I'm currently a PhD candidate at MIT in the Materials Science and Engineering department, conducting research under Prof. Angela Belcher. I work on synthesizing new III-Nitride nanomaterials for electrical, photonic, and medical applications. I was a Bell Labs Graduate Research Fellow from 2004-2006 and am currently a NSF Research Fellow (2006-2009). I recently did a short internship in Rwanda. In my free time, I do graphic design and glassblowing.
I thought all math puzzles would be hard to understand. I thought all the interesting math would be too difficult for me to learn as a high school student. It wasn't until I stumbled upon the math circle that I realized there are a lot of really fun, really fascinating math puzzles that I could comprehend but still have a hard time solving! As I've gone through my education, I've discovered that many of the most interesting things I've learned have been outside the classroom. Math circles certainly offered me a lot of cool things. And who knew the pigeonhole principle and cake cutting algorithms would be so useful...."
Want to contact Jennifer?
(please, only students involved with the circle) "I wouldn't mind if people in the circle wanted to contact me. I would love to talk to people about Harvard or MIT or Boston or anything like that." Email Jennifer at jhsieh [at] gmail [dot] com

Tiankai Liu

Tiankai Liu 01Tiankai Liu is currently studying math at Harvard, and will graduate next June.
He won in his age group in the BAMO in 1999 and 2000, placed 2nd in Mathcounts in 2000, won the ARML in 2000, won the USAMO in 2002, 2003 and 2004, and won IMO gold medals in 2001, 2002, and 2004. He was a grader at MOSP in 2005 and a Putnam (see problems here) fellow in 2005 and 2006.
Here is what Tiankai says about his experience at SJMC:
"I attended the circle in junior high and came to realize how much I enjoyed math problem solving, such as in olympiads. By making challenging material accessible, the teachers gave me the encouragement and confidence to learn more."
Tiankai Liu 02 And here is Tiankai with his fellow students at the summer 2007 REU program at Duluth, Minnesota. This 30-year-old program is the one of the most successful for undergraduate mathematics research and arguably the most sought after. Its director, Dr. Gallian, is the current president of the Mathematical Association of America (MAA). Dr. Gallian chooses participants very carefully, and it is a big achievement to be selected.
We are glad to congratulate both Tiankai and Josh Batson (first from the left), also a former student of the SJMC, on joining the illustrious ranks of Dr. Gallian's REU students!