McGinnis accepted into Clemson graduate school

March 14, 2013
Contact: Mary Moates ‘14, Communications Assistant
865.981.8207; communications@maryvillecollege.edu

Sarah McGinnis, a senior mathematics major at Maryville College, has been accepted into Clemson University’s MS/PhD program for mathematical sciences. She will complete requirements for graduation from Maryville in May 2013 and plans to begin studying at the South Carolina university in the fall.

While at Maryville, McGinnis has been advised by and completed an independent Senior Study with Dr. Jennifer Bruce, associate professor of mathematics.

One of the distinctive features of a Maryville education, the Senior Study requirement calls for students to complete a two-semester research and writing project that is guided by a faculty supervisor.

McGinnis’s completed study is titled “Algebraic Graph Theory.” The study involved an investigation of the connections between two fields of mathematics: graph theory and algebra. According to Bruce, McGinnis was able to illustrate concepts from graph theory to better understand algebraic objects and how concepts from algebra can help to deduce properties of graphs.

While at the College, McGinnis was selected to participate in a summer undergraduate research program with math professors at Missouri State University. Bruce said she believes that the experience strengthened McGinnis’ application for graduate school.

“It allowed her to see what the wider mathematics community was like and what it had to offer her,” Bruce said. “It introduced her to a variety of career options for mathematicians, and she encountered the trials, tribulations and triumphs of doing real mathematics research.”

Known for offering its students a rigorous and highly personal experience, Maryville College is a nationally ranked institution of higher learning that successfully joins the liberal arts and professional preparation in partnership with others. Founded in 1819, Maryville is the 12th oldest college in the South and maintains an affiliation with the Presbyterian Church (USA).

Sarah McGinnis is the daughter of Sean and Jeanne McGinnis of Hickory, N.C. She graduated from Fred T. Foard High School in 2009.


Maryville College is ideally situated in Maryville, Tenn., between the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and Knoxville, the state's third largest city. Founded in 1819, it is the 12th oldest institution of higher learning in the South and maintains an affiliation with the Presbyterian Church (USA). Known for offering its students a rigorous and highly personal experience that includes an undergraduate research requirement, Maryville College is a nationally ranked institution of higher learning that successfully joins the liberal arts and professional preparation. Total enrollment for the fall 2014 semester is 1,213.