Autumn 2003
PNWMAA Newsletter

PNWMAA Meeting in Alaska
Project NExT
Section News Briefs
New Faces
MAA PMET Workshops
Section Officers


Section News Briefs

During the past year, the book Proofs Without Words: Exercises in Visual Thinking (MAA, 1993) by
Roger Nelsen of Lewis & Clark College was translated and published in Spanish and Japanese.

Larry Anderson, who has been in the math department at Whitman College for thirty-four years, is taking early retirement in December, 2002. Larry will be greatly missed for his contributions to the department and the college, his interest in students and in teaching, and his involvement in successful joint research with students. The department is currently conducting a search for a tenure-track replacement for Larry and has a special interest in someone whose research program has components suitable for collaboration with undergrads.

At Pacific University, Christine Guenther has assumed the duties of chair of the mathematics and computer science department while Michael Boardman enjoys a half-year sabbatical. Bogdana Georgieva participated in the Second International Conference on the Teaching of Mathematics at the Undergraduate Level, Crete, Greece this past summer. Her paper “New Approach to the Use of Solution Manuals in the Teaching of Higher Mathematics” will appear in the refereed proceedings. Nancy Neudauer has been selected to participate in the AWM workshop at the upcoming joint meetings in Baltimore.

This year, and only this academic year, the math department at Central Washington University can boast of having the components of a Pythagorean Quadruple. Until July 11, 2003 we have Stuart Boersma (36), Tim Englund (36) and Jim Harper (49) as “legs” to the Quadruple: 62 + 62 + 72 = 112. This Quadruple can be generated by (u,v,w) = (3,2,3) via the formula

a = 2uv/g, b = 2wv/g, c = (u2 + w2 – v2)/g and d = (u2 + w2 + v2)/g

where g = gcd(u2 + w2, v).

Also at CWU, Stuart Boersma (with Michele Hluchy) published a paper recently in Primus on the “The Angle of Repose”. The CMJ has accepted Aaron Montgomery’s “Hairy Parabola” and the Monthly has accepted Jim Harper’s “Another Simple Proof of 1 + 1/22 + 1/32 + . . . = π2/6”. Raza Choudary also published a paper in the Journal of Topology recently.

Grants Around the Section

University of Alaska Anchorage
An NSF funded MER-AMS (Mathematics and Education Reform-American Mathematical Society) Workshop took place at the University of Alaska Anchorage from September 11-14, 2003. The title of the workshop was “Excellence in Undergraduate Mathematics: Lessons Across the Curriculum”. Twenty five teams of faculty members from across the United States discussed mathematics education at the university level. Dr. Deborah Narang was the local coordinator with assistance from Dr. Cora Neal. Presentations were given by Dr. Deborah Narang, Dr. Larry Foster, Dr. David Meyers, and Dr. Hilary Davies. Dr. Mark Fitch and Dr. Alberta Harder also participated in the Workshop. 

British Columbia Institute of Technology
Dr. David Holloway has received a 3rd year of funding from the BCIT Technology Centre to pursue development of a software package for modeling shape change in growing three-dimensional shells. Dr. Holloway is using the current version of the software to study plant development, with funding from the University of British Columbia and Harvard University. A group of BCIT computer students is currently working on converting the software into user-friendly Linux and Windows versions for general use by engineers, physical scientists and botanists.

Pacific University
Nancy Ann Neudauer has been awarded an AWM travel grant for this academic year.

Pacific Lutheran University
The Mathematics Department at Pacific Lutheran University received a National Science Foundation grant of $141,602 for their project, "Adapting WeBWorK Internet-Based Gateway Exams and Maple PowerTools to Introduce Appropriate Use of Technology in the First Two Semesters, of Calculus".  The co-Principal Investigators for the project are Bryan Dorner, Daniel J. Heath, Jessica K. Sklar, and Richard Louie.

Seattle University
John Carter
received an NSF REU Supplemental Grant to fund two students over three years in advanced undergraduate research.  The objective of the research project is to complete detailed comparisons between mathematical models of three-dimensional surface water waves and physical experiments.

Seattle Pacific University
Dr. Brian Gill is a co-PI along with three members of the SPU physics department on a National Science Foundation Course, Curriculum, and Laboratory Improvement Grant for “Adaptation and Implementation of Research-based Curricula in Introductory Physics Courses.”

Western Oregon University
Dr. Laurie Burton and Dr. Maria Fung won a PREP grant from the MAA and ran a successful workshop "Active Learning Approaches to Teaching Mathematics Content Courses for Elementary and Middle-School Teachers" from the 7th to the 11th of July. For more information please see

Whatcom Community College
Math Instructors Heidi Ypma and Doug Mooers have been awarded a Teachers Teaching with Technology Grant from Ohio State University and Texas Instruments. They will be offering a PTE-M&H Technology Workshop for middle school, high school, and college level math teachers. The two-day workshop will be held December 12-13 at Whatcom Community College. The instructor will be Stuart Moskowitz from Humboldt State University in California.


Copyright © 2003
Pacific Northwest Section, Mathematical Association of America.
Send questions or comments to Brian Gill, Newsletter Editor, or call (206) 281-2954.