The ECMI node at NTNU.
(by Anne Kværnø, Professor at NTNU)
The Norwegian Institute of Technology (NTH) was founded in 1910, and it was located in Trondheim.
The Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) was established in 1996, when NTH merged with the College of Arts and Sciences (AVH), the Medical School, and the Science Museum. In 2016 NTNU merged again, with three colleges, and is now the largest university of Norway, with 39000 students, of which 3000 are international students. NTNU’s main profile is in natural science and technology, but offers in addition bachelor, master and PhD-programs in a wide range of other disciplines.
The Department of Mathematical Sciences at NTNU has almost 50 permanent faculty, 20 postdoctoral fellows and 65 doctoral students. The department has five research groups: algebra, analysis, differential equations and numerical analysis, geometry and topology, and statistics.
The department has a wide range of teaching responsibilities. This includes all the basic education in mathematical sciences for engineering and natural science students, Bachelor’s and Master’s programs in Mathematical Sciences, and a special Master’s program in Industrial Mathematics for engineering students. The department also plays a central role in a Master’s program for the education of high school science teachers. The master programs enjoy ample recruitment of highly qualified candidates, and as a consequence, the same holds also for the PhD-program.
The department aims to sustain and strengthen the research activity within mathematical sciences, improve the teaching at all levels, and strengthen the capacity for supervising master- and PhD-students. It is currently involved in several innovative teaching activities.
Henrik Martens: The father of industrial mathematics in Trondheim.
Henrik Martens (1927-93) started as a professor in mathematics at NTH in 1968. His background was quite unusual.
After three years as a radio officer, he settled down in New York with a position at the Consolidated Edison Company and later at the Bell Telephone Laboratories. He studied in the evenings, and graduated as an electrical engineer in 1956. After this, he studied mathematics and finished his PhD from Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences in 1962.
His diverse background made Professor Martens advocate a more applied mathematical program in mathematics. As a consequence, the study program in Industrial Mathematics was established in 1982, based on the philosophy to provide the students with a solid, broad basis of knowledge in mathematics, statistics and numerics, applicable for the understanding and modelling of industrial processes. Professor Martens was also active in the founding of ECMI in 1987. He was the elected president of ECMI in 1993, but sadly died in October the same year.
The study program of Industrial Mathematics at NTNU is today organized as a specialization in the 5 year Master of Technology program in Physics and Mathematics, in which the students choose their specialization after the second year. Around 35 students graduate in Industrial Mathematics from NTNU each year, and the candidates are quite popular in the job marked, in industry as well as in the public sector. Several will also continue with a PhD in mathematical disciplines, or in other areas where their broad background make them valuable candidates.