University of Galway student wins prestigious Mathematics prize

Galway Daily news University of Galway student wins prestigious Mathematics prize

A student at University of Galway has won the prestigious Hamilton Prize which recognises the best young Irish minds in Mathematics.

The award commemorates famed Irish scientist William Rowan Hamilton and his discovery of quaternion algebra in Dublin on October 16, 1843.

This is a four dimensional number system which has been used in satellite navigation and video game programming.

In recognition of his mathematical excellence, James Hayes received a cash prize of €500, a certificate of achievement and attended an exclusive masterclass with the 2022 Hamilton Lecture speaker, Professor Avi Wigderson, of the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton.

James said that it was a great honour to receive this prize, adding that he’s had a passion for mathematics for as long as he can remember.

“I found the Hamilton Day masterclass with Professor Avi Wigderson, and chaired by University of Galway’s own Dr Rachel Quinlan, particularly insightful.”

“I would like to thank the RIA for organising the event, IBEC for their generous sponsorship of it, Professor Wigderson and Dr Quinlan for their generosity with their time, and the School of Mathematics at the University of Galway for their continuous support.”

Mr Hayes is one of nine students to have been honoured by the Royal Irish Academy, which gives the prize to the top mathematical students in their penultimate year of study, as nominated by their university.

Professor Cathal Seoighe, Head of the School of Mathematical and Statistical Sciences said that she was delighted for James.

“The prize is awarded to the best undergraduate mathematics students across the country and is a testament to James’ consistently excellent performance in his studies.”

“James joins a long and talented list of Hamilton Prize winners in the School of Mathematical and Statistical Sciences and we feel very fortunate to have been able to attract these incredibly talented students and always look forward to seeing where their studies will take them next.”