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Fall 2014 News from the Campuses of . . .


Two members of our mathematical family won significant awards this year: Tory Fields, an undergraduate actuarial science major, has been awarded first prize, Undergraduate Level, in the Association for Women in Mathematics (AWM) Essay Contest, and Holly Dickin a full-time contract faculty member in our department, won the Ball State University Lawhead Award for excellence in general education.

Richard Stankewitz was recently awarded a 5-year Simons Foundation Collaboration Grant to support his research in complex dynamics. The goal of the Collaboration Grant program is to support the 'mathematical marketplace' by substantially increasing collaborative contacts between mathematicians. The foundation makes grants to accomplished, active researchers in the United States who do not otherwise have access to funding for research that supports travel and visitors. Hanspeter Fischer was awarded this same grant several years ago.

In spring 2014 we hired three new tenure-line mathematicians: Roza Aceska (Vanderbilt University, applied harmonic analysis), Dusty Grundmeier (University of Michigan, several complex variables), and Dan Rutherford (University of Arkansas, topology). All will be joining us in fall 2014.     TOP

FRANKLIN COLLEGE - Franklin, Indiana

The 2014-15 academic year promises to be an eventful one for Franklin College mathematicians. We expect to graduate 17 math majors next spring (out of a total graduating class of just over 200). Justin Gash was awarded tenure and promotion to associate professor last spring, and took over as department chair this fall. John Boardman is on sabbatical in the fall semester, and Dan Callon will be on sabbatical in the spring. And Paul Fonstad and Stacy Hoehn are expecting their first child in November. Never a dull moment in our department!     TOP

INDUANA UNIVERSITY - Bloomington, Indiana

Russ Lyons had a short video exhibited during the "2014 Bridges Conference Short Movie Festival" (, one of 15 to have been accepted. This festival took place during the 2014 ICM in Seoul, Korea. His video uses art and music to illustrate random spanning trees. (More details are on his website, linked at the above site.)     TOP


Professor Dave Legg passed away in July 2014. He was a former department chair, and was the lead local organizer for the Indiana MAA's Spring 2005 meeting at IPFW. The IPFW math web site has a memorial page:

This Fall, as part of the ongoing 50th anniversary celebration of the founding of IPFW and the Department of Mathematical Sciences, the department is hosting the 56th MIGHTY conference on graph theory (Oct. 3&4), and the Midwest Workshop on Asymptotic Analysis (Sept. 19&20).

Yang Liu is a Visiting Researcher for the 2014-15 academic year, from Zhejiang Normal University, China. Dr. Liu's research areas are complex analysis and applied mathematics.     TOP


Indiana Wesleyan University has a new faculty member starting this fall: Scott McCullough who is half-math, half-physics faculty, as we are starting new physics and physics education majors.

The department is also collaborating with Taylor University in running a high school math day Thursday, March 19, 2015 at IWU's campus.     TOP


Allen Broughton stepped down in June after 20 years as Head of the Department. He looks forward to being a "regular" faculty member again. David Rader has taken over this position.

Two faculty members were promoted to Full Professor : Diane Evans and Joshua Holden.

Five members of the department are on sabbatical during the upcoming year:

  • Kurt Bryan is working with MEI on Compressed Sensing and Inverse Problems.
  • Yosi Shibberu received a Fulbright Scholarship and is spending the year in Ethiopia.
  • Bill Butske is working with biochemists at IU to model virus assembly.
  • Elton Graves is spending the fall term in the Philippines.
  • Diane Evans will be spending the winter term working with Minitab.

We added two new Visiting Assistant Professors to the department:

  • Nate Chenette’s area of expertise is in order preserving encryption used to support efficient range queries on ciphertext. He received his Ph.D. in Algorithms, Combinatorics, and Optimization from Georgia Tech, then spent a few years teaching at Clemson University.
  • Mark Panaggio’s research interests are in the dynamics and stability of complex systems, especially those of synchronization patterns that can form when large groups of oscillators communicate, such as you find with neurons and the brain. He received his Ph.D. in Applied Mathematics from Northwestern University.     TOP

SAINT MARY'S COLLEGE - Notre Dame, Indiana

Recent Hires:

  • Dr. Elizabeth Wolf (Assistant Professor): Beth attended college at Bucknell University, where she studied computer science and classics before deciding on a mathematics major. She then moved to the University of Wisconsin at Madison, where she completed her PhD in math this May. Beth is interested in using randomness and computer simulations to model real-world systems, particularly biological population models and chemical reaction networks. She's looking forward to sharing her interests with her students and the Saint Mary's community. Beth is also looking forward to exploring South Bend with her husband, Chris.
  • Dr. Christopher Dwyer (Visiting Assistant Professor): Chris received his Masters of Arts and Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin. He received his Bachelors of Science from the University of Notre Dame.
  • Dr. Christopher Wedrychowicz (Visiting Assistant Professor): Chris received his Bachelors of Arts, Masters of Arts, and Ph.D. from the University at Albany, SUNY.

Recent Tenure & Promotion: Dr. Bogdan Vajiac was promoted to associate professor and received tenure.

Events: Dr. Kristin Kuter, along with the help of the Math Dept. Admin. Asst. Mandy Gair, is gearing up for Hypatia Day 2015, scheduled for Feb. 21. This event is a daylong conference for 7th grade girls interested in Math and/or Science. We coordinate hands-on activities for run by the various student clubs at Saint Mary's, including the Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Nursing, Engineering, and Math clubs. This year we are expanding the event to include computationally-based art.

Press: Saint Mary's College published a report on the status of girls in Indiana last September, which received alot of press. The efforts to produce such a report were led by Dr. Kristin Kuter of the Math Depart., who was also the primary author. The report is available at

Grants & New Initiative: At the beginning of the year, the Math Department was awarded a grant from the Lilly Foundation to fund the development of a masters program in data science. The department is planning on admitting its first class to the program in the fall of 2014. The program will be a hybrid program, with most of the instruction being done online.

Internal Review: The department recently completed a successful internal review at the College.     TOP

TRINE UNIVERSITY - Angola, Indiana

Ms. Lauren Decker has joined as a new faculty member in the mathematics, informatics and cybersecurity department of Trine University.

Dr. Feng Tian has authored the following joint paper with Prof. Palle Jorgensen at University of Iowa, and it will appear in the September issue of Journal of Mathematical Physics: Palle Jorgensen and Feng Tian, "von Neumann Indices and Classes of Positive Definite Functions", to appear in Journal of Mathematical Physics, 2014. 9.     TOP


As of July 2014, the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science pulled an amoeba and split onto the Department of Mathematics and Statistics and the Department of Computing and Information Sciences. James Caristi is chair of the new Computing department.

Jonathan Beagley, visiting assistant professor in 2013-14, is now a tenure-track assistant professor as of 2014-15.

Jonny Stephenson (Ph.D. University of Chicago, 2014) is a visiting assistant professor for this year 2014-15.

Lara Pudwell was one of two recipients of the MAA's Henry L. Alder Award for Distinguished Teaching by a Beginning College or University Mathematics Faculty Member; the award was presented at Mathfest 2014.

Daniel Maxin was a recipient of the 2014 Early Career Faculty Mentoring Award given by the Division of Mathematics and Computer Sciences of the Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR).     TOP

WABASH COLLEGE - Crawfordsville, Indiana

Colin McKinney is organizing the Joint Meeting of the Midwest History of Mathematics Conference and the History and Pedagogy of Mathematics, Americas Section conference this fall at Wabash.

Also, with Prof. Esteban Poffald back from sabbatical, the department is functioning with seven FTEs for the first time since the financial crisis hit.     TOP



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