Linh Nguyen Le '18

Linh Nguyen Le '18

Majors: Math, Computer Science

Why did you choose to be a math major?

I find that I’m really interested in math and often spend hours solving math problems. Studying math helps me improve my problem-solving skills, be more careful with numbers, and gives me a great background to study and understand other subjects.

How would you describe the math faculty?

The math faculty has served as my mentors, professors, and career advisors. They’re not only helpful in class but are always ready to be my resources, give me career advice, or connect me to the right people when I need it. They often inspire me by explaining different applications of math in real life and show me and all math students that without math, other sciences could not improve!

Has the program challenged you?

Math courses are not easy but I’ve liked all of them. They require me to work hard but I’m okay with it since I find them really interesting. I’ve learned it’s important to focus in class to be successful in applying those theorems in homework and some advanced exercises.

What experiences at Luther have been most valuable so far?

The most beneficial experience for me has been getting to know the faculty and staff at Luther. Since Luther’s community is somewhat smaller than some colleges, it’s easy to get to know my professors and some of the staff through conversations and my work-study opportunities. Some have become great mentors and I appreciate getting to know them personally.

Why did you choose a liberal arts education?

I chose a liberal arts education because I love the general courses that are part my major’s requirements. They have expanded my knowledge, helped me grow as a human, changed my perspective on life, and opened my heart and mind to new ideas. I also love the class sizes. They are small enough to allow me to easily interact with my class and professors. They’re also large enough to let me hear diverse perspectives from people of varied backgrounds.

What do you like best about the campus life at Luther?

People here are so nice and sweet and will help you with anything, if they can. Walking around campus, I see people smiling, greeting to each other, and holding doors. They may be small actions but can brighten someone’s day. It makes me believe in a society where everyone is nice.

What is one class you would recommend all students take, regardless of major?

I would recommend all students take the class called Faith and Reason. I took that course that during January Term and found it was very special. It helped me understand more about the history of religions and science, trained me to look at the bigger picture of the problems, and gave me big questions that I needed to think about as a human being. As a math major, I’ve never encountered problems like this where there is no right or wrong; therefore, it was a great experience and I would recommend other students to take that class if they have the chance.

How are you involved in the Decorah community?

I usually go to a Lutheran church in the area and sometimes take part in music events at some of the local coffee shops and at the high school. I also enjoy poetry slams and the farmers market.

Linh’s Co-Curriculars:

  • Activity coordinator for Asian Student Association and Allies—we plan events and activities to bring knowledge about Asia and the Asian culture to the Luther community
  • Member of Student Philanthropy Council—I participate in and create events to raise student awareness about giving back to Luther
  • Member of Cantorei choir

After graduation, I would like to work as an actuary or a data scientist where my education will directly apply to my career. I also hope to inspire other students to study math by showing them that it’s a subject that not only involves theories but has valuable applications.

—Linh Nguyen Le