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The University of Southampton
Mathematical Sciences

Anna Fry BSc Mathematics with French

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Hi, I'm Anna Fry and I studied BSc Mathematics with French within Mathematical Sciences at the University of Southampton.

Maths isn't just sums and algebra, it's like a whole language that can be learned and once you can speak it, anything is possible.

What do you like about University of Southampton?

The University of Southampton is in such a great location; the campus is beautiful and being able to study here feels like such a blessing.

Why did you choose to study Maths?

I chose Maths because it's such a useful skill to have, both in today's job market and for my own expansion of knowledge.

What is it like studying Maths?

There are so many things to study that I didn't even know were maths related, for example the study of chaos and the internet. Maths isn't just sums and algebra, it's like a whole language that can be learned and once you can speak it anything is possible.

I also study French so as part of my course I went to the University of Lille in France and studied maths there for a year which was a great experience. I learnt so much about adapting to other cultures and styles of learning that I now feel like I could be thrown into anything and thrive.

What societies or additional activities are you part of and how has this helped your experience of university life?

I was social secretary of the University's Circus Society, which was great fun. I still can't juggle, but I met some really great people and have learnt how to organise events effectively and I can hula hoop fairly well now. I'm also a member of the ballet society and took part in the Pure Dance show, with over 100 other dancers even though I'm a novice. It was so much fun and it was great to be part of such a successful show. I also campaigned with the student's union against joining the NUS (National Union of Students), and the referendum had the highest ever turnout nationwide of any referendum of this type, with a landslide victory in our favour.

What was the topic of your research project and what did it aim to achieve?

Our research project was about how Google uses its algorithm, PageRank, to understand which websites are more 'important' or relevant on the internet. Within our group, we decided to apply this algorithm to Twitter as it's such an important marketing tool, to understand whether it could be used to analyse the 'importance' or relevance of a user in reference to their retweets, mentions and followers. It was such an interesting project to be part of and we learnt so much about how Twitter works and how this algorithm, with a bit of tweaking, could be really effectively used as a tool to understand who is seen as more influential on Twitter or other social media sites.

What have you been able to achieve as a result of studying Maths?

As a result of studying Maths, I feel like I have a really great degree under my belt that I can use in any part of the job sector. I can solve problems, communicate well with others and I've had the some of the best times I've ever had at Southampton.

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