San Diego State University welcomes 12 Presidential Graduate Research Fellows from around the world to the Aztec family. The competitive, merit-based campus program supports the recruitment of exceptional non-resident applicants to SDSU’s many graduate programs. Two of the awarded Research Fellows are members of the Mathematics & Statistics  Department working as Math 252 TA’s.  We welcome Stefan and Anja to San Diego and to SDSU.

stefan_ehardStefan Ehard
Hometown: Ulm, Germany
MS, Statistics





My university in Germany, the University of Ulm, is a partner institution of San Diego State University. For many years, some of the best graduate students in my university’s mathematics program have been coming to SDSU as part of an exchange program between the two institutions. This one-year program allows students to achieve both the American and German master’s degrees, making it highly attractive to me.

I earned my bachelor’s degree in pure mathematics at the University of Ulm in 2015. Thanks to a Fulbright Grant and the Presidential Graduate Research Fellowship, I am able to put my mathematical knowledge in an applied context at SDSU. I am particularly interested in stochastic modelling and statistics as they have many real-world applications, including in climate modelling at the Center for Climate and Sustainability Studies at SDSU. My research in statistics also compliments my focus on Actuarial Sciences and Insurance at the University of Ulm.  My goal is to pursue a Ph.D. in Germany and eventually apply my academic work at a company that operates on a global level.

Anja Schmidtanja
Hometown: Ulm, Germany
MS, Applied Mathematics




I did my undergraduate study in mathematics and almost completed a master’s degree in pure mathematics at the University of Ulm in Germany. Participating in the exchange program of Ulm University, I chose to attend SDSU because the study program Applied Mathematics provides the opportunity to enhance my mathematical expertise by gaining insights into advanced and specialized areas of mathematics.

My interests are mostly in the fields of numerical mathematics, so I focus a lot on programming which is absolutely crucial at the present time. Being fascinated in finding solutions for unsolved problems just by using tools I have learned during my study time, I appreciate to broaden my horizon with regard to solve even harder problems. Therefore, I consider my stay at San Diego State University to become a highly valuable experience which promises to significantly enrich and improve my knowledge in mathematics and to proceed my personal development.

I’m very grateful to receive a Fulbright Grant, the Presidential Graduate Fellowship and a scholarship from Talanx Foundation. With this help, I am getting closer to my subsequent goal of pursuing a PhD in Mathematics.