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Spring 2018 Newsletter


The 2018 Tri-Section Meeting

The Ninety Seventh Annual Meeting of the Illinois Section of the Mathematical Association of America will be held jointly with the Indiana and Michigan sections of the MAA. This Tri-Section meeting will be held March 23-24, 2018 at Valparaiso University in Valparaiso, Indiana.

2018 marks the 75th anniversary of the first Illinois, Indiana, and Michigan Tri-Section meeting in 1943 and the 25th anniversary of the second Tri-Section meeting in 1993.

Invited speakers include Steven Butler (Iowa State University), Allison Henrich (Seattle University), Judy Holdener (Kenyon College), Michael Jones (Math Magazine), Jennifer Quinn (MAA EC), and Mike Starbird (UT Austin).

From the Section Representative

Jon Johnson
ISMAA Representative
Elmhurst College

I was pleased to attend the Congress meeting as the Illinois Section Representative at the JMM in January. At this meeting Michael Pearson went over the MAA highlights since August. During Deanna Haunsperger's term as President, she hopes to emphasize

The greatest changes that members may see in the MAA are in the area of journal and book publishing. Taylor & Francis Group and the Mathematical Association of America (MAA) formed a new publishing partnership beginning in 2018. Taylor & Francis Group will publish the three flagship journals on behalf of the MAA: The American Mathematical Monthly, College Mathematics Journal, and Mathematics Magazine, as well as the magazine, Math Horizons. Books from MAA Press, which will continue to be developed and edited by the MAA, will now be published as an imprint of the AMS Book Program. Little will change for individuals. For example, the online descriptions of MAA Press books are still on the MAA website, but the actual purchase will be done in the AMS Bookstore. MAA members will continue to save 25% on MAA Press titles as a member benefit and will now receive 10% off most other AMS titles. The online journal Convergence and the print magazine Focus will continue to be published in-house, as well as the online MAA Notes series.

Things of note from the Congress meeting included:

ISMAA is grateful for its 2017 institutional sponsors:

The financial support from these institutions helped us to put on a great spring meeting in Glen Ellyn.

It is not too late to think about institutional sponsorship for 2018. Please encourage your institution to join us. The benefits for sponsorship this year are a bit different because our spring meeting is at the Tri-Section meeting (with the Indiana and Michigan Sections) in Valparaiso, Indiana. Student registration is free for this meeting, but there will be a charge for each team in the math contest. This will cover the cost of the t-shirts.

Ordinary sponsorship ($50) includes reimbursement from the Illinois Section for one team entered in the math contest at the Tri-Section meeting; sustaining sponsorship ($100) includes three free faculty registrations in addition to the reimbursement for one contest team; and speaker sponsorship ($200) includes the three free faculty registrations, reimbursement for one contest team, and listing as an underwriter of a plenary speaker in the meeting program. To become an institutional sponsor, download this form and send it with payment to:

Pat Kiihne
ISMAA Secretary/Treasurer
Illinois College
1101 West College Avenue
Jacksonville, IL 62650

ISMAA Awards

Distinguished Teaching, Distinguished Service, and Early Career Teaching Awards—Support Your Colleagues!

The deadline for the ISMAA's Distinguished Teaching, Distinguished Service, and Early Career Teaching Awards has passed, but we still strongly encourage you to nominate your colleagues for these awards for next year. The winner of ISMAA's Distinguished Teaching award will be the ISMAA's section nominee for the national Haimo Award. The winner of the section's new Early Career Teaching Award will be the ISMAA nominee for the national Henry L. Alder Award.

To make a nomination for one of these awards, please submit a one-page PDF letter of recommendation detailing the nominee's qualifications. Submit the nomination to the ISMAA Awards Committee Chair, Michael Sostarecz, via email at with "ISMAA Distinguished Teaching Award," "ISMAA Distinguished Service Award," or "ISMAA Early Career Teaching Award" in the subject header.

To find the guidelines on eligibility and nomination requirements, please visit the ISMAA Awards web page. Questions about the ISMAA awards should be addressed to the ISMAA Awards Committee Chair, Michael Sostarecz, via email at

Section NExT

Project NExT (New Experiences in Teaching) is a professional development program of the MAA. This program is designed to support new college faculty in their teaching, scholarly, and professional activities and to help these new faculty members to get involved in the mathematical community beyond their own institutions. The success of Project NExT on the national level has prompted a number of MAA sections to organize their own local versions of this program.

The Twentieth Annual ISMAA Section NExT Program will be held in conjunction with the ISMAA annual meeting at Valparaiso University March 23-24. Up to nine Section NExT Fellows will be selected. Anyone within their first four years of teaching mathematics (after finishing a master's or doctoral degree) at any two or four-year college or university in Illinois is eligible, as well as any graduate students at universities in Illinois who are completing their PhD this year and have a position in Illinois for the upcoming academic year. Newly selected Section NExT Fellows' meeting registration and Friday lunches at the annual meeting will be paid for by the ISMAA for the current and next year's ISMAA Annual Meetings.

The Fellows' Program will begin on Friday morning, with the Section NeXT panel session Encounters with Experiential Learning (11-12:15), it will be followed by a round table discussion during lunch where new Section NExT Fellows will have an opportunity to get to know one another as well as other sectional Fellows and national Project NExT Fellows. At the lunch meeting, we will match new Section NExT Fellows with a Mentor. It is expected that each Mentor-Fellow pair will continue to communicate about professional development issues throughout the following academic year. The meeting will conclude with a workshop on Inquiry Based Learning by Michael Starbird.

Application materials for Section NExT Fellows can be accessed via the links below. The application deadline for the 2018 ISMAA Section NExT Fellows is Friday March 16, 2018. For further information, please contact the Director for the ISMAA Section NExT Program:

Section NExT Application (MS Word)
Section NExT Application (PDF)

Ellen Ziliak
Department of Mathematical and Computational Sciences
Benedictine University
Lisle, IL 60532
Phone: 630-829-6594