Florida Section Newsletter
January 1998
Volume 19, Issue 2


bulletMathematics Awareness Week
bulletCall for Papers
bulletSummer Workshop
bulletThe Ohio State University College Short Course Program
bullet1998 Nominations
bulletCampus News
bulletUniversity of Florida
bulletFlorida International University
bulletSt. Petersburg Junior College

1998 Mathematics Awareness Week

We are once again pleased to communicate that Mathematics Awareness Week 1998, April 26-May 2, provides you with an opportunity to organize or sponsor local events celebrating the importance of mathematics.

The 1998 theme is Mathematics and Imaging. Mathematics provides the concepts, tools and algorithms that underlie the range of technologies that depend upon the efficient and effective display of images. Pattern recognition in medical diagnosis or automatic identity verification systems, medical tomography, compression of image data transmitted by satellite or data networks, and believable rendering and illumination of characters in animated motion pictures are only some of the modern technologies that depend upon the mathematics of imaging for their success.

If April 26-May 2 doesn’t work for you because of exams, spring break, or other commitments, you may schedule MAW98 activities any week in March, April, or May.

Here are some suggestions for Mathematics Awareness Week activities:

bulletDesign your own World Wide Web MAW98 page and link it to the national MAW98 page, http://forum.swarthmore.edu/maw/. When the MAW98 materials become available in early 1998, they will be posted at this site. Currently, there is an announcement for MAW98 and a wealth of materials from MAW97.
bulletEncourage your student chapter to organize campus events;
bulletExplore joint events with colleagues in disciplines such as business administration, operations research, computer science, physics, engineering, and statistics;
bulletReview the MAA & SIAM Visiting Lecturer Programs for speakers on MAW-related topics, a speakers roster is in development at the AMS (see Web sites);
bulletRequest state or local officials to issue a proclamation declaring April 26-May 2 to be Mathematics Awareness Week in your municipality or state;

Mathematics Awareness Week is an excellent vehicle for communicating with your administration and with new audiences about mathematics, working with your public information office to publicize you activities, and inviting local legislators or elected officials to speak. Public officials appreciate opportunities to visit with faculty and to learn more about efforts to encourage students to enter and excel in mathematics-based careers.

Please help us share Mathematics Awareness Week publicity in your community by sending us newspaper articles on mathematics topics appearing in your institution’s publications, local papers, and community newspapers during April.

The JPBM and its member societies,
--the American Mathematical Society,
--the Mathematical Association of America, and
--the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics,
appreciate the involvement of the American mathematics community in the 1998 Mathematics Awareness Week.

Call For Papers

University of Wisconsin/La Crosse

June 12-13, 1998

We invite submission for 25-minute and 50-minute presentations focusing on any aspect of mathematical modeling. Both mathematical and pedagogical themes are welcome and a student presentation session is also planned. Plenary speakers include Soloman Garfunkel, executive director of COMAP, Martha Siegel, director of Towson University’s Applied Math Lab and MAA Secretary, and W. Michael O’Fallon, chair of Health Sciences Research at the Mayo Clinic.

For further information or if you wish to present a paper, please send a one-page abstract or full paper before March 15, 1998 to:

Helen Skala
Mathematics Department
University of Wisconsin/La Crosse
La Crosse, WI 54601
Tel: 608-785-6614
email: skala@math.uwlax.edu

Summer Workshop

Teaching Calculus with the TI-92

This summer, from August 3 through August 7, Rollins College will host a five day short course on the use of the TI-92 in the first year Calculus curriculum. The workshop will be conducted by Wade Ellis, Joe Fiedler and Rick Vitray using materials taken from their new textbook Calculus: Mathematics and Modeling.

The course begins with an introduction to the TI-92 followed by a discussion of the changes the technology enables in content, pedagogy, and emphasis of Calculus courses. Participants then obtain first-hand experience using the computer algebra, graphics, and table features of the Ti-92 to investigate difference equations, the derivative, the definite integral, antiderivatives, and differential equations in the context of real world problems. Data collected with the Calculator-Based Laboratory (CBL) will be analyzed and modeled via the curve fitting features of the TI-92. Additional topics include evaluation and assessment issues presented by this new technology. The week’s activity culminate with participants creating their own classroom projects.

For further information regarding the text book Calculus: Mathematics and Modeling visit the web page at: http://www.mathsci.appstate.edu/*wmcb/CMM/

For further information regarding the Technology College Short Course Program for College and University Mathematics Faculty visit their web page at http://www.math.ohiostate.edu/tcsc/

For information on becoming a participant contact Rick Vitray by email at rvitray@rollins.edu, by phone at 407-646-2495, or by mail at Department of Mathematics, 1000 Holt Ave., Rollins College.

The Ohio State University
College Short Course Program

The Ohio State University Technology College Short Course Program - part of the Teachers Teaching With Technology Program - has scheduled sixty 1 to 5-day hand-held technology-based short courses for 1998 at colleges and universities in twenty-three states. Courses offered are: (DEV) for the developmental level, (ALGT) for the college algebra-trigonometry level, (PCALC-CALC) for the precalculus and calculus level, (CAS-CALC) for the calculus level, (MTE) for math teacher educators, (M2S) for mathematically modeling sciences (physics), (STATS) for statistics and data analysis, (SCIENCE) primarily for chemists and biologists, and other affiliated courses. Participants will learn how to use Texas Instruments hand-held technology to enhance the teaching and learning of mathematics and science. Each math course contains some use of the CBL and CBR to collect data for the purpose of mathematical analysis. Pedagogical, testing, and implementation issues are addressed in all courses. Academic year courses are 1 -3 days and summer courses are 3 or 5 days. If you are interested in attending a course, please see Program details at http://www.ohiostate.edu/shortcourse.

Hard copies of the course list can be obtained from Bert Waits and Frank Demana through Ed Laughbaum at The Ohio State University, 231 West 18th Avenue, Columbus, OH 43210, or via

e-mail at elaughba@math.ohio-state.edu. The College Short Course Program is endorsed by the American Mathematical Association of Two-Year Colleges (AMATYC) and has offered nearly 100 courses in 27 states in the last 4 years.

1998 Nominations

The Nomination Committee is happy to submit the following slate of nominees for the 1998 election:

The nominees for Governor (you should have received a ballot in the mail):

Marilyn Repsher
Jacksonville University
Fred Zerla
University of South Florida

The nominees to be presented at March meeting:

President-Elect for Programs: Walter Walker
Eckerd College
Vice President-Elect for Programs: V. S. Ramamurthi
University of North Florida
Vice President-Elect for Sites: Janice McFatter
Gulf Coast Community College

Nominating Committee:

Donald M. Hill (Chair), Florida A&M University
Lou Cleveland, Chipola Junior College
Willie C. Cook, St. Petersburg Junior College
George C. Cosner, University of Miami
James R. Weaver, University of West Florida

University of Florida

Dr. Kermit Sigmon, a member of the University of Florida Mathematics Department since 1966, passed away in January, 1997. In a special issue of the department newsletter dedicated to Kermit’s memory, Chairman Joseph Glover wrote:

"We dedicate this issue to the memory of Kermit Sigmon, whose presence was so woven into the fabric of the department that his work continues to touch the lives of undergraduate and graduate students, staff, and faculty. We honor his memory not only for his service to UF and the state, but also for his enthusiasm and his unique personality. We will miss him."

You can read the entire Kermit Sigmon Memorial issue on the mathematics department website, http://www.math.ufl.edu/departnewsevents.html

In other department news, Professor Krishna Alladi participated in a Special Session in memory of Paul Erdos held at MAA Mathfest in Atlanta last summer. Alladi spoke a year ago December at the M. S. Swaminathan Research Foundation in Madras, India on the establishment of the Ramanujan Journal by Kluwer Publishers. Also an Indian national newspaper, The Hindu, printed an article by Alladi on this journal. Coordinating Editor Professor Frank Garvan has placed this journal on the world wide web — if you would like to look at it, just visit the mathematics department homepage at http://www.math.ufl.edu and click on Garvan under FACULTY.

Elisabeth Majthay, who taught in our department since 1978, retired this past February. The Lecturers took Elisabeth to dinner, and presented her with an engraved clock. Over the years, I have heard many undergraduate friends speak highly of her as a teacher for Calculus III.

Professor Rick Smith’s book, The MATLAB Project Book for Linear Algebra, has been published by Prentice Hall. The cover features the fate of the Arnold cat as it is subjected to successive iterations of a linear transformation.

Professor Alexander Turull participated in the Zassenhaus Group Theory Conference held at New College, USF, during January, 1997. He spoke on Tensor induction. Professor Neill White participated in a Special Session on Computational Algebraic Geometry at the Annual Winter Meeting of the AMS/MAA, lecturing on Symmetry and Antisymmetry in Bracket Polynomials.

Professor Jonathon King was awarded the Merton M. Hasse Prize for his Math Monthly article Three Problems in Search of a Measure during the MAA Mathfest in Atlanta. King also lectured on A zero-one law for dynamical properties at a Special Section on Topological Dynamics at an AMS Meeting in College Park, Maryland. Graduate student Scott Christian also spoke at this meeting on Cohomological quantization modules for symplectic tori.

The faculty was well represented at the AMS Regional Meeting held in Memphis during March. In particular, Professor Jed Keesling was represented at four separate presentations with three different co-authors. Keesling, Professor Louis Block and graduated student Chitra Krishnamurthi spoke in a Special Session on Dynamical Systems and Fractal Geometry. Keesling lectured on The boundaries of self-similar tilings of n-space, Krishnamurthri lectured on Boundary of self-similar sets, and Block lectured on Maps of the interval, inverse limit spaces, and the pseudoarc. Professor Chris Stark also spoke in a Special Session on Topology of Manifolds and Singular Spaces on Geometry and homotopy functors.

We had a busy spring semester of conferences organized with the cooperation of different research groups in the department. First, under the auspices of the Institute for Fundamental Theory, Professors Chris Stark, David Groisser, and Gerard Emch were on the organizing committee of an international IFT Workshop on Moduli Spaces in Geometry and Physics, held during February 14 - 16, 1997. Faculty member Professor Mark Kellum spoke on Teichmuller Theory for Transverse Holomomorphic Structures. Second, during February 27 - March 1, a Conference on Optimal Control: Theory, Algorithms and Applications was held on campus, with Professors William Hager, Gang Bao, and Bernard Mair involved in the organization along with Professor P.M. Pardalos of the Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering. This Conference was held under the auspices of the Center for Applied Optimization, of which Professor Hager is a co-director. Faculty member Gang Bao spoke on Surface-enhanced and Controlled Diffractive Optical Applications. Finally, the 13th Annual Southeastern Analysis Meeting (SEAM 13) was held during March 14 - 16th with local organizer Professor Scott McCullough and a goodly list of over 40 speakers. Professor Paul Robinson of our department spoke at this meeting on A Shale theorem for the Fock representation of a certain complex Krein space.

Gerard Emch, John Klauder, Chris Stark and I, along with 4 colleagues from the UF Physics Department, organized the Institute for Fundamental Theory Workshop on Moduli Spaces in Geometry and Physics, held on campus from February 14-16, 1997. This interdisciplinary meeting was sponsored jointly by UF’s Institute for Fundamental Theory and by the Departments of Mathematics and Physics, with financial aid from CLAS, ORTGE, and an NSF grant.

Our Ph.D. alumni were well represented at the Annual Winter Meeting of the American Mathematical Society/ Mathematical Association of America. Professor John Kenelly of Clemson, Ph.D. 1961, gave a Short Course on Mathematical modeling and forecasting with calculators: The difference, interplay, and new role in beginning courses and also led a panel discussion on the topic of "Careers for mathematics majors in financial risk management." Professor Jean Bevis of Georgia State University, Ph.D. 1965, lectured in a Session on Group Theory on the topic of Parametric characteristics of toroidal maps and modular quotient groups. Professor Antonio R. Quesada of the University of Akron, Ph.D. 1978, lectured in a Session on the Use of Hand-Held Technology in the Teaching and Learning of Mathematics on the topic of Should Recursion be Taught in Basic Mathematics Courses?. Also, Professor John Mayer of the University of Alabama, Ph.D. 1982, lectured at the Memphis AMS Meeting on Building higher degree Julia sets in a Special Session on Chaotic Dynamics.

Florida International University

Dr. Addelhamid Meziani was promoted to Full Professorship.

Four new faculty have been hired to tenure track Assistant Professor positions.

Dr. Thomas Leness joined our department in August 1997. He completed his Ph.D. from Columbia University. Then he joined Michigan State University as a Visiting Research Instructor for three years before joining us. His research interests are gauge theory, geometry and topology of four-manifolds.

Dr. Bao Qun Li joined our department in August 1997. He completed his Ph.D. from University of Maryland at College Park. His earlier appointments were at University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology as Assistant Professor. He came to us from Boston College where he held a visiting position from 1996. His research interests are several complex variables.

Dr. Theodore Tachim Medjo joined our department in August, 1997. He got his Ph.D. from University of Paris, Orsay and was on a post-doctoral appointment at Indiana University before joining us. His research interests are numerical fluid dynamics, atmosphere/ocean simulations and numerical analysis.

Dr Wensheng Wang joined our department in August, 1997. He got his Ph.D. from California Institute of Technology. He subsequently served as Dickson Instructor, lecturer and member at the University of Chicago, University of Southern California and Institute for Advanced Study respectively. His research interests are harmonic analysis and partial differential equations.

Dr. Daniella Bekiranov is on leave of absence for ‘97-’98. Dr. Steven Hudson is on sabbatical leave. Dr. Anthony Shershin is visiting Concordia University, Canada on a faculty exchange program for Fall 1997.

The 1995-1996 Teaching Incentive Program awards were given to Dr. James Slifker and Dr. Juliaan Edward. Dr. Shamita Dutta Gupta was awarded the Outstanding Young Women in America Award.

The Mathematics Department has a home page on the net (compiled by Maky Manchola) at http://.fiu/~math/. The FIU Math Gazette is edited by Dr. Taje Ramasamujh. The Mathematics Department also has a Computer Lab where we offer computer assisted courses in single and multi variable calculus. Dr. George Kafkoulis is currently the Administrative Directore of the laboratory.

St. Petersburg Junior College

On November 20, 1997, seventeen students participated in the first round of the AMATYC Math League Contest. Brad Choi scored the highest in this first round, with Ian Foltz and Sarah Braun scoring second and third highest. The next round of the contest will take place in early February.