The mathematical constant pi (or π) is a number that reflects the ratio of a circle’s circumference to its diameter. No matter how big or small a circle is, if it is perfectly geometrical, its circumference (the distance around the exterior) will be approximately 3.14 times its diameter (the distance across the middle).

That 3.14 figure is rounded to the nearest hundredth. Actually, pi’s decimal places go on infinitely. So mathematicians celebrate this all-important number each year on March 14, or 3-14. And they celebrate pi with…what else? Pie!

Columbia College is no different. The Ether L. Bruce Math Center has a whole day of festivities planned to celebrate Pi Day. You can stop on by 105 Wightman Hall from 8:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. on Wednesday, March 14 for pi-shaped cookies and treats. Not to mention an array of different types of fruit, nut, cream and gluten-free pies.

The Bruce Math Center will also feature 3-D puzzles and handouts with math-related puzzles and information all day. And, as an added bonus, we’re celebrating the birth of famed theoretical physicist Albert Einstein, born 139 Pi Days ago! The center will also be open for to students who drop in for regular math tutoring services throughout the day.

But that’s not all we’ve got in store for your Pi Day.

We’ll also be offering TI-Rover demonstrations in Dorsey Gym, from 11:15 a.m.-12:15 p.m. and 2:30-3:30 p.m. Stop on by to learn how to program the TI-84 calculator and make the Rover robotic vehicle move around and draw pictures.

Jefferson Middle School, which is just across 8th Street from campus, is also getting in on the fun. Jeff Middle will be hosting Pi Night from 5-7 p.m., in which current (and future) middle schoolers and their parents are invited to partake in a night of math activities, food, prizes and opportunities to discuss math curriculum with teachers. Columbia College, a Partner in Education with Jeff Middle, is sponsoring the event.

Having fun and learning along the way: it’s as easy as pi!

Contact Bruce Math Center coordinator Susan Hughes ( or mathematics professor Dr. Ann Schlemper ( for more information.