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Student Profile: Austin Wagner ’13

Austin WagnerAustin Wagner ’13

  • Mathematics Major
  • President of Augsburg’s Math Club Unbounded
  • Honors Program
  • URGO Summer Researcher
  • AugSTEM Scholar
  • Studied in Nicaragua & Budapest

What do you value most about Augsburg?
My relationship with the professors here. They go out of their way to provide students with opportunities, like my internship with Target, and make themselves available for questions and advice. My professors encouraged me to read advanced topics outside of the course material. I probably learned the most as an undergraduate while speaking directly with my professors.

What is your advice for other undergraduates?
“Do what you want to do.” Opportunities will show themselves if you are passionate about what you do and work hard. Just throw yourself into your work and “make it count”.

Tell me about your research.
During the summer after my sophomore year I worked with mathematics professor Dr. Jody Sorensen studying dynamical systems, specifically I investigated properties of invertible functions. Dynamical systems are important to the study of population dynamics such as the growth in a population of deer or the decline of an animal on the endangered species list.

What is it like to work for Target Corporation?
I received an internship at Target Corp. during the summer after my junior year. After going through a series of interviews, I was give the title of Data Analyst Intern and worked with a large customer database. The question that I focused on was why a certain population (guests) was ‘leaving’ Target? This specific group went from being ‘best guests’ or a high spending population to not visiting Target at all. I spent most of my time developing methods for analyzing guests. This research turned into a broad, long range project that the company has now allocated an entire team of researchers to investigate.

How did you find out about studying abroad in Budapest?
I found out about the Budapest Semesters in Mathematics through my undergraduate research mentor, Dr. Sorenson. This semester is intended to be a Pre-Graduate program with a very rigorous curriculum intended to prepare students to be successful in graduate school