Graduate Student Spotlights 

Sophie Gonet - Mathematics and Statistics

Area of study: Mathematics, PhD

Faculty advisor: Christelle Vincent

From: Stow, Massachusetts

Why did you choose UVM? What do you like best about being at UVM?
I heard great things about UVM and living in Vermont, in general. I love being surrounded by mountains. I also had a professor from undergrad who studied under Dr. Richard Foote for his Ph.D. I heard wonderful things about him and his experience here, so it was very enticing.

Why did you choose this area of graduate study? What career will you pursue when you complete your degree?
I love math—It is so pure and beautiful. I originally wanted to be an elementary math teacher, but as I advanced my math degree in undergrad, my love of math grew profoundly. I aspire to become a professor at a small liberal arts school.

Tell us a little about the research or project you are working on.
I am currently in the process of studying for the Real and Complex Analysis Ph.D. Qualifying exam. I just passed the algebra exam at the beginning of the month. I plan on taking the analysis exam in January.
 
If you had a time machine and could go back to before you started your graduate program, what advice would you give yourself?
I would tell myself that I can do it. It will be overwhelming at times, but I need to believe in myself.  It also would be helpful to get ahead on some of the material before actually starting the program.

Can you share a time when a faculty advisor or mentor connected you with either new insights or a valuable opportunity (conference, publication etc.)?
Professor Foote has done this frequently. There were many times in his office when the light bulb would turn on and everything would suddenly make sense. He taught me the importance of drawing pictures. Sometimes a simple drawing makes all of the puzzle pieces fit together.