Truman Koehler Professor, Mathematics
I am a mathematician interested in how mathematics helps us understand our world and ourselves. While I advocate studying mathematics for its own sake (it really is super fun when you get to know it), I fully appreciate how mathematics enlightens and facilitates progress in areas such as business, medicine, science, engineering and industry. I am also a mathematics educator interested in understanding how mathematical concepts are best communicated and how the study of mathematics helps students develop their abilities to think and communicate clearly and creatively. I enjoy teaching a broad spectrum of courses across the mathematics curriculum. It has also been fun to develop first-year-seminar and cluster courses that emphasize analytical thinking and writing. As the current director of the Faculty Center for Teaching, I am working to effectively engage with conversations about pedagogy at both national and international levels.
Research, Scholarship or Creative/Artistic Interests
My mathematical interests are in combinatorics (a branch of mathematics concerned with counting) and graph theory, especially applied problems that require graphical models. I enjoy working on questions of optimal design for structures such as mass transit systems, communication systems and computer networks. I have growing interests in applied statistics, mathematical modeling and applied linear algebra. I enjoy putting energy into undergraduate problem solving, undergraduate research and games and puzzles with mathematical connections. In recent years, I have developed interests in the history of women in math and science and diversity issues as related to STEM fields. Teaching is what I love doing most, so I also focus research and writing efforts on mathematical pedagogy.