Published on March 24, 2023 by Diamond Nunnally  
Kwadwo Student Research Group 2023
Kwadwo Anti-Fordjour leading his student research group at Samford University.

Decades of research and mentoring students have finally led to this moment. Math and Computer Science professor Kwadwo Antwi-Fordjour was recently selected to participate in the 2023 African Diaspora Joint Mathematics Workshop (ADJOINT).  

"I feel blessed and highly favored to be part of this amazing year-long program," Antwi-Fordjour said.  

ADJOINT provides opportunities for American mathematicians—especially those from the African diaspora—to form collaborations with distinguished African American research leaders on mathematical and statistical research topics. 

Antwi-Fordjour will attend a two-week summer session at the Simons Laufer Mathematical Sciences Institute June 19-30. He will collaborate with the nation's most prestigious mathematicians and statisticians in the Ticks, Fire and Control: Implementing Prescribed Fire and Control Measures at Ticks Invasion Front research group led by Folashade Agusto from the University of Kansas.  

"Folashade Agusto is an accomplished mathematical biologist, and I am honored to be collaborating with her," Antwi-Fordjour said. "I am excited about this research and looking forward to beginning this collaboration." 

Antwi-Fordjour and the group will focus on using prescribed burns to control tick populations due to the increased risk of tick-borne illness in the United States. The burns are intentionally done for land and forest management because it is known to be timely and cost-effective. 

"I will get the opportunity to form collaborations with celebrated African American research leaders on subjects at the forefront of applied mathematics," Antwi-Fordjour said. "ADJOINT will enable me to become part of a network of research and career mentors." 

"We are very proud of Dr. Antwi-Fordjour for receiving this significant honor," Math and Computer Science chair Chad Awtrey said. "It reflects the high quality of his research achievements and his promise for continued success. This experience will enable Dr. Antwi-Fordjour to expand his research and his network of collaborators. It will also increase the quantity and variety of research opportunities for Samford students, which is indeed exciting." 

Antwi-Fordjour has spent the last several years applying predator-prey math models (Page 20) to real-world scenarios, while mentoring students in the process. His student research group at Samford has published numerous articles in prestigious math journals. The group published in the American Institute of Mathematical Science (AIMS) Mathematics just last year. The paper focused on the impact fear of predators (animals) has on the stability of populations over time. They applied predator-prey math models to populations operating without an authority figure and discovered that this causes them to go extinct.  

The work Antwi-Fordjour will be conducting with Agusto is different from his research in predator-prey dynamics. However, that’s one of the reasons he applied for the ADJOINT program.  

"This research seeks to answer ecological questions different from my research, and that's great," Antwi-Fordjour said. "I am excited about this new adventure to advance my research career into other mathematical and biological areas.” 

 Learn more about the Department of Math and Computer Science. 

Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.