Serving Western Pennsylvania and West Virginia
Brief Bio for Aparna Higgins
Dr. Aparna Higgins received a B.Sc. in mathematics from the University of Bombayin 1978 and a Ph.D. in mathematics from the University of Notre Dame in 1983. Her dissertation was in universal algebra, and her current research interests are in graph theory. She has taught at the University of Dayton, Ohio, since 1984. Although Dr. Higgins enjoys teaching the usual collection of undergraduate courses and an occasional graduate course, her most fulfilling experiences as a teacher have come from directing undergraduates in mathematical research. She has advised eleven undergraduate Honors theses; she has co-directed an NSF-sponsored Research Experiences for Undergraduates program; and she continues to help students prepare talks for regional and national mathematics meetings. She has presented workshops at mathematics meetings on undergraduate research. She enjoys giving talks on mathematics to audiences of various levels and backgrounds. Dr. Higgins has been the recipient of four teaching awards -- from the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Dayton, the Alumni Award (a University-wide award), the Ohio Section of the Mathematical Association of America, and in 2005, the Deborah and Tepper Haimo Award for Distinguished College or University Teaching, which is the Mathematical Association of America's most prestigious award for teaching. Dr. Higgins is very involved with the Mathematical Association of America, the largest professional society that focuses on undergraduate mathematics education. She serves on many of its committees. One of the more enjoyable MAA committee experiences was that of being a founding member of, and then chairing, the Committee on Student Chapters, which helps create and maintain Student Chapters, provides support to Sections for student activities and provides appropriate programming for undergraduates at national meetings. Dr. Higgins is co-director of Project NExT (New Experiences in Teaching), a professional development program of the MAA for new or recent Ph.D.s in the mathematical sciences. Project NExT addresses all aspects of an academic career: improving the teaching and learning of mathematics, engaging in research and scholarship, and participating in professional activities. It also provides the participants with a network of peers and mentors as they assume these responsibilities. Aparna Higgins is married to Bill Higgins, a mathematician who teaches at Wittenberg University, in Springfield, Ohio. They like to take year-long sabbaticals and spend part of that time teaching at other institutions. They feel privileged to have taught at the Naval Postgraduate in Monterey, California, and at the United States Military Academy in West Point, New York. Aparna and Bill Higgins have two sons.