Malena Español

Assistant Professor
University of Akron


Malena Español is Assistant Professor in the Department of Mathematics with a joint appointment in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at The University of Akron. Malena Español is originally from Argentina, where she received her B.S. in Mathematics from the University of Buenos Aires.  After earning a M.S. and Ph.D. in mathematics from Tufts University, she spent three years as a postdoctoral scholar at the California Institute of Technology.

Malena’s research interests are in applied and computational mathematics. Malena is interested in the development, analysis, and application of mathematical models and numerical methods for solving problems arising in science and engineering. During her doctoral years under the supervision of Misha Kilmer, she developed wavelet-based multilevel methods for signal and image restoration problems. At the California Institute of Technology, Malena was part of the Computational Mechanics Group led by Michael Ortiz. As a postdoctoral fellow, Español worked on analyzing the Quasicontinuum Method, a method which is used to simulate the mechanical behavior of polycrystalline materials. Currently, Malena is working with Dmitry Golovaty and Pat Wilber on a project related to developing atomistic-to-continuum models of carbon nanostructures with support from the National Science Foundation.

“I am a mathematician today because of the opportunities and support I have received along the way from mentors, friends, and especially my father and my husband. Many people helped me at each step of my mathematical career, and my way to give back is to offer opportunities and resources to students. I feel honored to be part of this year’s celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month. Showcasing the mathematical career path and the work of the Latin@s and Hispanics is a great way of showing the future Latin@s and Hispanic mathematicians what they can do and achieve!”

-Malena Español