Department of Mathematics & Statistics
SAC Room 305
800 Lancaster Avenue
Villanova, PA 19085
On August 27, 2020, Drs. Kaitlyn and Peter Muller gave a talk about mathematically modeling of the spread of covid-19 here at Villanova. The talk is aimed at a general audience, particularly undergraduate math majors.
Title: Mathematical Modeling of COVID-19 at Villanova University
Abstract: During this pandemic, applied mathematics has been at the forefront of the discussions on the daily news and maybe even in our own homes. As the novel coronavirus and the disease it causes, COVID-19, affects our lives on a global scale we are all searching for answers on how the disease spreads and how we can best protect each other and ourselves. Mathematical modeling aims to quantify a real life problem in such a way that we can make better decisions in certain challenging situations. In this talk we will discuss how differential equations and dynamical systems can be used to describe the spread of a disease in a population like our Villanova community. We will begin with simple models you would encounter in our very own Differential Equations with Linear Algebra course and work our way up to a coupled nonlinear system of 14 differential equations developed specifically for our campus. We will discuss concepts like the basic reproductive number, R0, which you hear about so often on the news and online. We will also discuss the effects of different measures such as mask wearing, social distancing, and avoiding large gatherings in hopes of providing some context to what you hear about on the news and to help you understand scientifically why all these measures we promise to uphold in the Caritas Commitment matter so much.