Sarah Brauner awarded NSF Postdoctoral Fellowship

MINNEAPOLIS / ST. PAUL (5/4/2023) – PhD candidate Sarah Brauner has been awarded a National Science Foundation (NSF) Mathematical Sciences Postdoctoral Research Fellowship. Brauner was awarded $190,000 from the NSF to pursue her research proposal entitled “Symmetries of rings from combinatorics and configuration spaces.” She is in the final year of her doctoral studies and is set to graduate later this month.

Sarah Brauner came to the University of Minnesota in 2017 after earning her BA in Mathematics and Economics at Reed College. She studies algebraic combinatorics with Professor Vic Reiner. Brauner’s recent work has focused on topological spaces called configuration spaces and certain algebraic objects called monoids. Configuration spaces are important in algebraic topology, algebraic geometry, and physics. Monoid theory is a growing field with diverse applications ranging from probability theory and geometry to category theory. Her NSF postdoctoral fellowship proposal aims to examine the symmetries of these objects as a way of building connections between combinatorics, algebraic topology, and representation theory.

“I am very excited to enter the next phase of my career as a mathematician. During graduate school, I benefited from the excellent mentorship of my advisor, Professor Vic Reiner, and from the collaborative and welcoming environment amongst the graduate students at UMN. Beyond research, one of my goals going forward is to be an effective mentor and help foster positive mathematical experiences for others, especially students who come from groups that have been historically excluded from mathematics,” Brauner says.

In June 2023, Brauner will start in a postdoctoral position at the Max Planck Institute for Mathematics in the Sciences in Leipzig, Germany as part of the Nonlinear algebra group. Then in October 2023, she will continue her postdoctoral research as an NSF Postdoctoral Fellow at Laboratoire d’Algèbre, de Combinatoire et d’Informatique Mathématique (LACIM) in Montreal. Brauner will then join Brown University as both an NSF Postdoctoral Fellow and the Prager Assistant Professor beginning in summer 2024.