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Yulia Gel

“Mathematics, to me is a passion and beauty of logic. I think that mathematicians learn to think differently and logic plays a crucial role even in our everyday life.”

My first major was pure math (ordinary differential equations) and then I changed to applied math (filtering and time series analysis). I took a whole bunch of pure math courses, from group theory to Riemann geometry to numerical methods for PDE to stochastic control. I certainly do not remember all these courses but I know very well and I am confident that if I am given almost any book, I will be able to make my path through it. I know how to self-study almost any subject.

It is never the same and it is never boring. You always get new problems to solve and when you solve the problem you experience an extreme feeling of fulfillment. There is certainly no routine in my job.

I like to travel. When I am on my way back from one trip, I am already planning the next one. I also like opera.

I was blessed to have great teachers but I am especially very grateful to my high school math teacher (Dr. Ivanov) who first opened the beauty of math to me and my PhD supervisor (Prof. Fomin) who showed me that you need to be in love in math in order to succeed as a mathematician. Both of them unfortunately passed away. I often recall my PhD advisor and try to follow his steps when I work with my graduate students and postdocs. I try to give them back what I received from my advisors.

No, but I feel happy with what I am doing now. I would not change my career path.

When I was a PhD student struggling with some proofs in my PhD thesis, I read the quote by the famous French physicist Marie Curie:

“Life is not easy for any of us. But what of that? We must have perseverance and above all confidence in ourselves. We must believe that we are gifted for something, and that this thing, at whatever cost, must be attained.”

When I am stuck, I often go back to this quote to gain strength and move forward.

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