Florida Section Newsletter
June 1998
Volume 19, Issue 3


bulletFlorida Section Executive Committee
bulletPast President's Message
bulletExecutive Committee Meeting
bulletFinancial Statement
bulletFlorida Section Distinguished Service Award
bulletAward Nominations
bulletCampus News
bulletUniversity of South Florida
bulletRollins College
bulletJacksonville University
bulletEckerd College

Florida Section Executive Committee


Mike Mears
Manatee Community College
(941) 755-1511 ext. 4267

Past President

Shiv Aggarwal
Embry - Riddle Aeronautical University
(904) 226-6706


Walter Walker
Eckerd College
(813) 864-8461

Vice President for Programs

Judy Jones
Valencia Community College
(407) 299-5000

Vice President-Elect for Programs

Phil Novinger
Florida State University
(850) 644-8711

Vice President for Site Selection

Ken Pothoven
University of South Florida
(813) 974-9568

Vice President-Elect for Site Selection

Janice McFatter
Gulf Coast Community College
(850) 872-3852


Ernest Ross
St. Petersburg Junior college - Retired
(813) 391-7159

June White
St. Petersburg Junior College
(813) 791-2542

Newsletter Editor

Mark Anderson
Rollins College
(407) 646-2323

Section Governor

Fred Zerla
University of South Florida
(813) 974-2561

Comments From The Desk of:
Shiv Kumar Aggarwal
1998 MAA Florida Section Meeting

Thanks to all of you who participated in out annual section meeting in Boca Raton and made it a success. The section returned to Florida Atlantic University after almost ten years. You must have noticed that the environment was as friendly as ever and Fred Hoffman (supported by Stephen Locke) was the chief local organizer as before. Dr. Nathan Dean, Vice-Provost and Professor of Physics, extended us an official welcome. The facilities were comfortable. Mother Nature helped, it did not rain this time. An excellent program put together by the Program Committee chaired by Chuck Lindsey was implemented. One of the noteworthy items on the agenda was the plenary session by Andrew Sterrett who talked about the unusual topic Non-Academic Careers for a Mathematician. Our site selection process (J.C. Campbell) is progressing smoothly. Though we have not been able to firm up the year 2000 meeting in Puerto Rico, we have not given up and we continue to work on it. Our next meeting will take place in Gulf Coast Community College, Panama City. I hope that the mathematics community members in the nearby area would make use of this event in their back yard and show up in larger numbers at this meeting. This will encourage the organizers to hold more meetings in the area in the future. Y2K (Year 2000) meeting may take place in the University of South Florida. In year 2001, we plan to meet in Florida Gulf Coast University. Don Hill, our past president did an excellent job and I am looking forward to the enthusiastic leadership of our new president Mike Mears.

As outgoing president, my message to you is simply this: Please participate fully in your section meetings, not only by listening to and delivering talks, but also by participating in the organizational structure of the section. As a sound mind has better chances of residing in a healthy body, the academic content can ferment better under a superior organization. Without any doubt we have a very good organization, but there is always room for improvement. I am sure that there is no dearth of talent around. We just need to get more involved. Please suggest the names of these talented people to the nominating committee. The solicitations for the names for different office bearers are requested in this newsletter.

Let me close by saying, it has been a pleasure working with you all.

March 1998 Executive Board Meeting

The Executive Committee for the Florida Section, The Mathematical Association of America, met on Gulf Coast Community College in Panama City, Florida, on Saturday, May 9, 1998. Among items of general interest are the following:

*The future sites for the section meeting are:

1999: Gulf Coast Community College, Panama City

2000: University of South Florida: Tampa

2001: Florida Gulf Coast University, Fort Meyers

*Efforts will be made to include a student conference as part of our Florida Section MAA meeting in 1999. A committee is being formed to work out the details. As usual, graduate students presenting at the regular meeting will be awarded $50.

*The program for 1999 is already partially developed with one session set: How you Test Math with Graphing Calculators.

*FTYCMA will be welcomed again.

*Committee members toured the facilities at Gulf Coast Community College and are enthusiastic about the wonderful facilities and are looking forward with enthusiasm to what appears to be a tremendous meeting in Panama City.

Florida Section - Mathematical Association of America
5/9/97 - 5/6/98

BALANCE ON HAND 5/9/97 $3000.39
           Republic Bank Checking Account      $3,000.39
Registrations - 1998 Meeting 525.00
Governorís Breakfast - 1998 Meeting 210.00
Luncheon -1998 Meeting 585.00
Book Sales Receipts - 1998 Meeting 169.95
Book Sales Commission -1998 Meeting 50.00
Publishers Contributions -1998 Meeting 300.00
National MAA Support 1,000.00
Suncoast Regional Meeting 1,015.82
Registration Expenses -1998 Meeting 234.20
Student Speakers -1998 Meeting 525.00
Program Printing 1998 Meeting 203.63
Food Services (Brkfst, Lnch, Brks) - 1998 Meeting 1,285. 35
Book Sales -1998 Meeting 169.95
Award Framing 55.28
Student Attendance-National Meeting 200.00
Jacksonville Regional Meeting 100.00
Suncoast Regional Meeting 1,062.50
Newsletter 2,000.00
BALANCE ON HAND 5/6/98: $1,020.25
Republic Bank Checking Account 1,020.25
Republic Bank Account I (As of 1/31/98) 2,065.73
Republic Bank Account II (As of 3/18/98) 1,578.73
Republic Bank Account III (As of 3/18/98) 1,578.73
TOTAL ASSETS: $6,243.44

Suncoast Region 692.77
Exxon Program 250.59

Marilyn Repsher
Florida Sectionís 1998
Distinguished Service Award

The Florida Section of the Mathematical Association of America is pleased to recognize the outstanding service of Professor Marilyn Repsher to the Section and to the furthering of mathematics in the State of Florida.

Professor Repsher has been most active in the Florida Section, serving as Vice President for Four-Year Colleges in 1981-92. In addition to those responsibilities, she is known for her involvement in numerous other activities within the Section, such as planning four-year college meetings, and participating in annual meeting programs, always showing a willingness to do so. Notably she has a keen interest in students, encouraging both their success and participation in mathematics.

Professor Repsher has been an especially strong advocate of the regional meetings throughout the Section. At Jacksonville University, her home institution, she has been actively involved in curricular reform. As President of the Section, she continued to champion these causes throughout the State.

With this citation we recognize the many contributions and dedication of Professor Marilyn Repsher to the Florida Section of The Mathematical Association of America.

Award Nominations

Recommendation For Distinguished Teaching

The Awards Committee is seeking nominations for the Teaching Award to recognize distinguished college or university teaching. Among the criteria to be considered for the award are: (1) innovative approaches to teaching; (2) creation of new or substantially revised courses for special audiences; (3) significant use of technology in the learning process; (4) enhancements; (5) involvement with instruction for pre-service and/or in-service school teachers; (6) a long-term record of variety of high quality courses taught; (7) other significant teaching activities. The nominator should write a letter of support and should enlist others to write letters of support on behalf of the nominee. A brief vita of the nominee focusing on teaching activities should be submitted with the nomination. Look for nomination form in this issue of newsletter.

Recommendation For Service Award

The MAA/Florida Service Award is given to a member of the Association who has played a significant role in the activities of MAA/Florida over a sustained time period. The nominator should write the basis for the nominations, outlining the pertinent activities. Look for nomination form in this issue of newsletter.

Submit materials to:

Leonard Lipkin
Department of Mathematics & Statistic
University of North Florida
4567 St. Johns Bluff Road
Jacksonville, FL 32224
FAX (904) 620-2818 - lipkin@unf.edu

University of South Florida

W. Richard Stark stepped down as Chair of the Department. He was Chair since Summer, 1994. His successor will be the current Vice Chair, Marcus McWaters.

Approximately 175 people braved the rain to come to the seventh R. Kent Nagle lecture on March 19. The Speaker was Steven Krantz, noted author of how-to books in mathematics. He spoke about "Contemporary Issues in Mathematics Education", primarily the controversies over non-traditional teaching techniques. He said that the three major goals for teaching a course are:

  1. To teach the student to read a book, specifically, the course text.
  2. To set a pace and organize the material
  3. To teach the student to conceptualize the material in his own mind, so he can communicate it. He also discussed teaching evaluations, group teaching, and other issues.

Professor Krantz is a Professor of Mathematics at Washington University. He has written over a hundred papers and twenty books, including How To Teach Mathematics. He has received numerous honors, including the Chauvenet and Beckenbach prizes of the MAA.

The Nagle Lecture Series will continue next semester. For further information, or if you wish to get on the mailing list, contact the Department of Mathematics at mathdept@math.usf.edu. Announcements will be made at our web-site at http://www.math.usf.edu/.

Richard Darling and Colorado veterinarian Tim Hold have developed a model relating pulmonary arterial pressure (PAP) in cattle to brisket disease. They found that some of the genes associated with high PAP were not expressed in steers with a normal Y chromosome. Their work will be described in a 1998 article in Biometrics. This work was started when USF professor German Ramirez, MD, and his assistant, Polly Brittle, RN, persuaded Darling to investigate genetic patterns in cattle data Brittle was studying. This is one example of the interdisciplinary projects that our mathematics department participates in.

Shanti Gomatam gave a talk on her research on Nonparametric Regression Estimation at the Florida Chapter meeting of the American Statistical Association (ASA) in Orlando in February.

In February, Mourad Ismail gave an invited address at the Southwest Mathematical Physics Meeting at Caltech. Then he went to Arizona State University in Tempe, where he spent the rest of the month and gave three talks on orthogonal polynomials and integral operators. While in Arizona, he visited the University of Arizona at Tucson, where he gave a talk on continued fractions at the Number Theory Seminar. Then in April, he visited the Fermi Institute for Theoretical Physics at the University of Chicago. He also appeared in the news: SIAM News quoted him as the North American Coordinator of the Askey-Bateman Project.

Maeve McCarthy, who is visiting us for a year, and Steven Cox of Rice University, wrote The Shape of the Tallest Column, in the SIAM Journal of Mathematical Analysis, to appear in May, 1998. She will be going to Murray State University next year.

Greg McColm went to the Finite Model Theory workshop at Oberwolfach, in Germany, where he gave a talk on Quantification with Pointers.

Ed Saff was awarded a Visiting Erskine Fellowship to the Department of Mathematics at the University of Canterbury, New Zealand for the period May 10 - June 20, 1999. During his visit he will present weekly lectures on potential theory and applications to approximation.

Ed Saff was an invited main speaker at the international conference Approximation Theory VI, held January, Ď97 in Nashville. His lecture was entitled Fast Decreasing Rational Functions. Also at that conference, Saff presented the Popov Prize for outstanding research by a young investigator. The recipient was Arno Kuijlaars, a Dutch mathematician who has visited USF several times and collaborated with members of our department.

Ed Saff and Vilmos Totik were invited participants at the Oberwolfach, Germany, Math Institute conference on Computational Aspects of Orthogonal Polynomials, in March, Ď97.

Masahico Saito and J.S. Carter of the University of South Alabama have published a book on Knotted Surfaces and Their Diagrams. He also gave a two talks at two AMS meetings: Structures and Diagrammatics of Four Dimensional Topological Lattice Field Theories at a special session in the January Baltimore meeting, and State Sums for Triangulated 4-Manifolds and Their Diagrammatics at a special session at Kansas State University in March. He also visited the University of South Alabama, where he gave a seminar talk on Invariants of Triangulated Manifolds.

In January, Richard Stark gave an invited talk on Ulamís Asynchronous Cellular Automaton ó the Solution at the Pacific Rim Conference on Mathematics at The City University of Hong Kong. He also gave a talk on Asynchronous Automata Nets as an Artificial Tissue Model at the Chinese University of Hong Kong.

Fred Zerla gave a workshop talk on The Historical Development of Algebra at the regional meeting of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics in Tampa, in March.

Rollins College

Julie Carrington was awarded tenure and promoted to Associate Professor.

Doug Childís book, Scripting Guide for the TI-92 and 92 Plus, will be available from Texas Instruments mid-summer 1998.

Jacksonville University

Congratulations to Dr. Marcelle Bessman and Dr. Robert Hollister, both of whom received tenure this year.

We are continuing to build our involvement with the Modeling Competition in Mathematics, with three teams participating this year. This is also our second year of participation in the Putnam exam.

Eckerd College

Vaughn Morrison retired on May 17 after serving the college for ten years. He and his wife Beth are moving to the mountains of Boone, North Carolina on July 1st but correspondence can still be addressed to him via the Mathematics Discipline at Eckerd. Bill Maddox has announced his plans to retire next year in May, 1999. Bill received his PhD in algebra from the University of South Carolina and has worked at the college continuously since 1966.

In March, 1998, Walter Walker attended his last meeting as a member of the Advanced Placement (AP) Statistics Test Development Committee. His retirement from the committee marks the end of a six years service with AP Statistics Committee, three of which were on the Course Development Committee. Over 7, 500 students took the first AP Statistics test, the largest number ever for a first year program, and the latest order-count for this years exam is over 17,000.

Jerry Jeveniles will be on sabbatical leave over the Spring Semester 1999 and plans to continue his research in general relativity at Argonne National Labs.

At commencement ceremonies this year, David Kerr, was awarded the 1998 Robert A. Staub Distinguished Teaching Award for, among other things, his remarkable ability to infuse the most rigorous and abstract of academic disciplines with poetry and humor.

Daniela Genova has joined our faculty as a visiting assistant professor of mathematics and will begin teaching in the Fall Semester 1998.

In April, 1998, Soupy Alexander attended the 12th annual National Conference on Undergraduate Research (NCUR) and presented her paper on Resolvents of m-accretive operators in Banach spaces. The paper was also accepted for publication in the conference proceedings. In March, 1998, Soupy Alexander, Shawn Liston, Denise Morgan, Angie Maitner, and Lindsay Richards attended the annual meeting of the Florida Section of the MAA in Boca Raton.

In May, 1998, Soupy Alexander, Denise Mason, Angie Maitner, and Lindsay Richards were inducted into the Florida Gamma Chapter of Pi Mu Epsilon.

Denise Mason will be participating this summer in a mathematics REU program in Minnesota. Soupy Alexander will be participating in an oceanography REU program in Maryland.

Mark Lewis (EC Class of 1992) is expected to complete his Ph.D. degree in Industrial Systems Engineering at Georgia Tech this September. He has accepted a postdoc at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver beginning in the Fall Semester 1998.