We are very excited to be hosting graduate students (visiting scholars) for the Summer of 2015 through the GEAR REGS program!

Reading and Background

Below is a list of suggested reading to prepare participants for a summer of fun and exploration:

Computational commutative algebra and tropical geometry

  1. What is a Groebner basis?
  2. Computing tropical varieties
  3. Introduction to Tropical Geometry

Affine semigroups

  1. Problems and Algorithms for Affine Semigroups

Arithmetic Dynamics

Text Book:

Wiki Page:

Arithmetic of Moduli Spaces:

Outer Automorphic Actions:

Mini Course on SL(2,C) Character Varieties

Special Words

Horowitz Paper (read this first for existence of unboundedly many 2 special words)

Another relevant Horowitz Paper

Why we think 3-Special words exist at all:

Anderson's Conjectural Classification of 2-Special Words

Some unpolished notes of Lawton.

Stats of Chas

MathOverFlow Page

Practical Information

Airports: We recommend flying into Reagan National Airport or Dulles National Airport. From National you can take the Metro to GMU, and from Dulles you can take the Flier.

Local Travel: See Metro Transit Authority. Also, there is Uber.

Things to do: There are many websites with information concerning the Washington DC area. For example, see TripAdvisor.

We recommend using Google maps with the public transportation option.

For restaurants, please see reviews at Yelp.

Visa Procedure

If you are visiting from another country, then for GEAR to be able to pay you, you need a J1 Visa.

Documents Needed for the DS-2019. We will provide a welcome letter via email (just ask).

Housing Options

We are working on getting space in our dorms (more to follow soon), but here are some local housing options:

1) Air BnB:

2) Conference and Intern Housing at GMU (terminates August 1): ,

3) The off-campus housing website:

4) Intern housing in DC:,,

5) Craigslist:


7) Various apartment complexes:,,,,

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