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Stright Lines, Spring 2003, Vol. 6-1

 

The Official Newsletter of the IUP Mathematics Department

Spring, 2003___________________Volume 6, Issue 1

 


 

                Welcome to another issue of Stright Lines. For any of you receiving this as a first issue and thinking that the IUP Mathematics Faculty can't spell “straight”, I remind you that the Mathematics Department is located in Stright Hall.

                This will be the last issue that I edit since I plan to retire at the end of this academic year. Editing “Stright Lines” has been a job with real rewards. It has been a pleasure to hear comments of appreciation for the newsletter and to hear from former students. I am pleased to note that Dr. Jerry Buriok has agreed to edit the next issue of the newsletter. (But he is nearing retirement also, since we came to IUP in the same year.)

                This issue includes several letters from alumni and we hope to hear from you soon. Tell us what you are doing now and tell us about your memories of IUP.

Jim Reber, Editor

 

 

Alumni Notes

Ron McGarvey finished his Ph.D. and joined the research staff at RAND as an associate operations researcher. He will be working out of their Pittsburgh office. RAND's other offices are in Santa Monica, CA and Washington DC.

 

Mark Rayha has decided to change his career path from Information Technology to the business field. He has been accepted into the prestigious Krannert MBA program at Purdue University (in the state of Indiana) and will be attending the MBA program full-time.

His email address is mrayha@mgmt.purdue.edu.

 

 

We Get Letters

 

                                                                April 29, 2002

Dear Stright Lines,

                Okay, it’s now official, I am sick of seeing my brother’s name in every issue of this newsletter! I just realized that if you choose to print this, people will have to read the name “Joe Kirchner” yet again. Oh well… Sibling rivalry and all that aside, I do have some very fond memories of my days as an IUP  math student.

                The most fun was being involved in Kappa Mu Epsilon, the math honor society. (Miss Arms was always very particular about pointing out that it was not an “honorary” society, but an “honor”society.) We had some fun dinners at the College Lodge and some great trips to KME conventions. We traveled to Eastern Kentucky University one year. I don’t know how Miss Arms could stand having 3 wacky college girls in her Toyota for all those hours. We all liked when we crossed the border into West Virginia and she announced, in her quiet, precise manner “Wild, Wonderful West Virginia.” The next year the convention was held in Shippensburg, (Miss Arms’ alma mater) so we all tried to imagine her there as a coed. I’d love to see my buddies from those days, so if you are ever back for Homecoming, look me up! For the last 5 years my family and I have been living in Indiana. My kids know where all my apartments were over the years, and they’ve even named the one over a garage “Mom’s Fonzi Apartment.” I’ve been lucky enough to run into several of my old professors around town. I never had Mr. Maderer for a class, but I worked for him, and apparently I was quite shy back then because I surprised him one day in Giant Eagle. Mr. Busovicki happened to be picking up a prescription when I was there with one of my sons in Diamond Drug. I like seeing his vast collection of old pictures and post cards in the Indiana Gazette. I thought I saw Dr. Duncan in Valley Dairy one day, but I couldn’t be sure it was him, or I was just imagining it, since he always told us about eating breakfast there. I’d have to say that Dr. Woodard and I were in the most interesting place when we saw each other—a farm tour of Indiana County. My youngest son is crazy about John Deere and farm equipment of any kind, so we were schlepping our way through the mud to see a dairy farm when I spotted Dr. Woodard. Maybe he’s a John Deere fan too. I was very impressed because he knew exactly who I was.

                IUP holds so many fond memories for me, and the town is a great place to raise my three kids. My husband and I are glad to be living here.

                                Diane (Kirchner) Nellis, BS Ed ’84

 


 

Dr. Buriok,

 I am a 1990 graduate of IUP (formerly Rachel Thurner) who enjoys the newsletters that are prepared by the mathematics department. I especially loved the articles about Dr. Merle Stilwell that were in the most recent issue.  I share some wonderful memories of Dr. Stilwell's calc sequence as well as enjoying the classes of the McBride brothers. I always thought it was quite interesting to hear which of the two brothers was the “easier” teacher during registration periods. I personally found both to be quite challenging and so enjoyable. I even now tell my 13-year-old daughter of how interesting it was to learn about mathematics history from Dr. Reber. I was also saddened to hear that Dr. Charlie Bertness retired. Surprisingly, I did not have Dr. Bertness as a teacher when he introduced me to the actuarial science field but I am so fortunate that he made that suggestion. However, I must say that Dr. Frank always scolded me for not being able to pass the statistics actuarial exam even though I had gotten A's in his statistics classes (I eventually passed that exam). As you can see, I enjoyed the wonderful teachers that shared in my experience at IUP.

 I am also writing to ask that you keep up an interest in the actuarial science career. I am a consulting actuary for Buck Consultants in Pittsburgh and truly love my career. I would be pleased to share my own experience as an IUP graduate who has been involved in an actuarial science career. I can also share the experience of being a working mother of three as well. We at Buck are always looking for bright talented individuals to pursue actuarial internships or actuarial careers. If there are any students that have an interest in this field and would like more information, they are more than welcome to contact me.

Rachel Gilmore

Associate Principal, Consulting Actuary

Buck Consultants - Pittsburgh

rgilmore@buckconsultants.com

Phone 412-394-3072

 

 

Write to Us

Send us your comments and suggestions on the newsletter or let us know what you are doing. You can write us at: Department of Mathematics, Indiana University of Pennsylvania,

 233 Stright Hall, Indiana, PA 15705-1072

You can visit our web page at

www.ma.iup.edu

and send email to us at:

                jburiok@iup.edu  or  gsstoudt@iup.edu

 

MARY LYNN CHIRICO RAITH

WINS MCWP AWARD

 

In recognition of her service to the Mathematics Council of Western Pennsylvania (MCWP) and of her contributions to mathematics education, Mary Lynn Chirico Raith recently received the 2001 MCWP Service Award. (Mary Lynn is profiled on page 5.) For eight years from 1993 to 2001, Lynn was Treasurer of the Council. Prior to holding that position, Lynn served on the Board as an elected representative and as a member of the Teacher Education Committee. Her assistance in setting up guidelines for and in selecting the winners of the Earle F. Myers Student Teacher Award has been invaluable.

In 1990 she became a member of the Pennsylvania team commissioned to disseminate the 1989 Curriculum and Evaluation Standards published by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM). Lynn’s knowledge of how students learn, of mathematics programs, and of research made her a strong and credible presenter. Lynn has worked on and promoted the Connected Mathematics Project, a nationally recognized middle school mathematics program. She has served on national committees to write assessment items in mathematics. Because of her contacts through this professional work, Lynn has been very helpful in suggesting and getting powerful speakers for meetings in Pittsburgh. Lynn has served on planning committees for annual meetings of the Pennsylvania Council and for regional meetings of NCTM. At present Lynn is employed by the Pittsburgh Public Schools in the Division of Instructional Support. In this position, she observes and works with students and teachers in the mathematics classroom. She continually provides professional development workshops not only for her school district but for many districts and Intermediate Units. Congratulate Mary Lynn on receiving the 2001 MCWP Service Award!

Reported by Ann Massey.

 

 

Wally Morrell

IUP Math Faculty Member

1965 - 1982

 

                Wally Morrell died in Green Valley, Arizona on December 7, 2002. He is fondly remembered by faculty in the Mathematics Department as an excellent teacher, a great teller of jokes and stories, and favorite emcee at Mathematics faculty parties. Contributions in his memory may be made to the Art Morrell Scholarship Fund at the Foundation for IUP.

 

Profile: Tracie Moreland Quiggle Class of 1996

Tracie Quiggle graduated in May 1996, and has earned a Master’s degree in Applied Statistics from Villanova University. She is now working at Merck and Co.  and agreed to answer our questions.

What mathematics program were you in at IUP and why did you choose that major? I was an Applied Mathematics major. I chose this major because math was the subject in which I felt most confident about my abilities when I was in high school. I wasn't sure what I wanted to do as a career but felt confident that it would have something to do with numbers!

What particular memories do you have of your days at IUP and your time in the IUP Mathematics Department? Perhaps you can relate an anecdote about your days at IUP.  I remember Dr. Reber's calculus courses very well - I was very intrigued by the special projects which he assigned that related calculus to the "real world".  I really think projects like those helped me realize where my interests and skills lied. Other classes I remember are Dr. Broughton's linear algebra and math history classes - I always enjoyed his classes too. I also found that Dr. Morgan's experience in the non-academic world was invaluable when he taught Operations Research. Some of my greatest memories though are shared with another IUP Mathematics Department alumnus - Lori Poff. Lori and I shared many math classes in our first two years at IUP together and had many laughs and good times. Usually a week didn't go by in which one of our professors was asking us to "keep quiet" or "share with the rest of the class what is so funny"! Lori is still one of my dearest friends today and we enjoy reminiscing about our days at IUP.

What did you do immediately after graduating from IUP? Upon graduation, I moved to Ambler, PA and was employed at Prudential AARP Health Care Options. This was the same company at which I had interned during the fall semester of my senior year at IUP. At Prudential, I worked in a Marketing Decision Support area for about a year and then moved to the Actuarial department for a short while.

What work have you been doing recently?  I have now been employed as a Project Manager at a major pharmaceutical company in the Philadelphia area for almost 5 years. I work on a team which is responsible for evaluating response to personal promotion in support of the Marketing and Sales areas.

In what way did the education you received at IUP prepare you for your career? Would you select IUP again? Why?  IUP provided me with the base of knowledge that I needed to steer me in the right direction for a career in mathematics.  Of great value to me was the internship that I did in my senior year at Prudential - not only was I paid to earn 9 credits while doing this, I was exposed to the type of work I now do today and thoroughly enjoy. I also felt that IUP's curriculum allowed me to see several aspects of a career in math. As I pursued my Master's in Applied Statistics at Villanova, I was also grateful for the solid background that IUP had given me as a foundation.

What thoughts do you have on your choice of a career related to Mathematics, or what advice might you have for students thinking about a choice of major? If I had to go back and do it all over again, I would still choose math as my major. There are so many opportunities out there for math majors - from teaching and operations research, to statistics and actuarial fields. My advice would be as follows - if you enjoy math and problem solving, choose a mathematics major. Nowadays, a person who has the capability to understand math and has a good working knowledge of the relevant software programs, can basically "write their own ticket" - the opportunities are plentiful.

 

 

Notes from the Chair

By Gary Stoudt

 

These are trying financial times for IUP and by extension the Mathematics Department. Harrisburg has given us budget cuts, a notion of productivity based on the number of bodies in a classroom, and mandates to change our curricula. We have lost two faculty positions in the past few years and we are being asked to increase class sizes to make up for it. We were forced to change the number of credits required for graduation from 124 to 120. We have reduced the frequency of our upper level and graduate mathematics offerings. Can I be upbeat with all this happening?  Call me crazy, but yes.

We have certainly received our wake-up call, and in the coming years I hope the department will change for the better. For better or worse we are being forced to take a hard look at what we do and how we do it. If nothing else, the increased dialog in the department and the desire to overcome these obstacles from Harrisburg will bring us closer together. Also on the positive side last year we hired four new tenure track faculty: Joseph Kosler, a statistician from Ohio State, Yu-Ju Kuo, an applied mathematician from Arizona State, John Lattanzio ’90, a mathematician from Pittsburgh, and Thomas Short, a statistician who returns to western Pennsylvania after a long stint at Villanova University.                     (continued on page 4)

 

(Notes from Chair, continued from page 3)

 

We currently have 127 students enrolled in our four undergraduate programs: applied mathematics, economics/mathematics, mathematics, and mathematics education, with mathematics education remaining our most popular program. Our freshman class for 2002-03 contains 42 students, a slight increase from last year. With a new influx of scholarship money and help from the Robert E. Cook Honors College, we were able to attract some outstanding students.  These students put (good) demands on us, and we are happy to meet that demand. The student faculty common room/lounge is getting plenty of use, the math club is coming back strong, and we hope to have KME thriving again soon. We will be increasing our offerings of special topics courses (with courses on mathematical modeling, differential geometry, and partial differential equations in the works) and we have instituted a graduate school mentoring program thanks to Drs. Adkins, Alarcón, Kosler, and Walker.

In spite the State System’s financial woes, I am happy with the direction the department is taking. We can always do better, and I hope that our alumni and current students can help us identify areas in which we need to improve. Let’s keep the lines of communication open.

 

 

New Mathematics Faculty 2002

Joseph Kosler is originally from San Antonio, Texas. His undergraduate work was done as a Math major and Physics minor and Education enthusiast at Trinity University in San Antonio. After he completed the Texas state secondary teacher certification requirements in 1990, he decided to go to graduate school and  chose to pursue Statistics at Ohio State University. Since 1990, he has worked in teaching, research, and consulting at OSU, but most notably as a lecturer. He spent three summers as an intern at the Bureau of the Census in the Statistical Research Division and also worked for six months with a chemical company on a project to develop a marketing research tool based on decades of historical data. His current research and doctoral dissertation are based on the problem of missing data. Surveys and experiments are often complicated by the presence of corrupted or absent responses. This area of research has proven to be fruitful and interesting from theory all the way to practice, and he plans to continue his involvement with missing data.

Yu-Ju Kuo was born in Taipei, the capital of Taiwan, in 1973. After graduating from college majoring in applied mathematics, she went to Taichung, a city in the middle of Taiwan, for her masters’ degree. In August 1998, she came to Arizona for her Ph.D., which was completed in May 2002. At ASU, she had a teaching assistantship, and a research assistantship for two summers. She was also selected to participate in a one-year Preparing Future Mathematics Faculty program. Her primary field of study is computational mathematics, with specialization in the area of continuous optimization and partial differential equations.

John Lattanzio was born and raised in nearby Kittanning, Pennsylvania. In 1990, he graduated from Indiana University of Pennsylvania with a Bachelor of Science degree in secondary mathematics education. Some of the professors that he had for class who are presently in the department include Dr. Stempien, Dr. Morgan, Dr. Donley, and Dr. Steelman. After graduating from IUP, he began teaching college and has been doing so ever since. He has taught at several local colleges and universities: Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Pennsylvania State University, University of Pittsburgh, Chatham College, and Butler County Community College. In January of 1993, he began graduate studies at the University of Pittsburgh. In August of 1994, he earned a Master of Arts degree in pure mathematics, centered about linear algebra, abstract algebra, and topology. After being introduced to graph theory and its unsolved problems, his initial intentions were diverted and he completed his Ph.D. degree in August 2001, with a dissertation in graph theory

Tom Short is returning to roots in Western Pennsylvania after 11 years on the faculty at Villanova University in the suburbs of Philadelphia. Tom and his wife Mary both graduated as math majors from John Carroll University in Cleveland, and Tom earned his Masters and Ph.D. degrees in statistics from Carnegie Mellon. Tom is the editor of the Journal of Statistics Education, the secretary for the Pennsylvania Council of Teachers of Mathematics, and the organizer of the Pennsylvania Statistics Poster Competition.

 


 

Profile: Mary Lynn Chirico Raith—Class of 1970

Mary Lynn Raith graduated in 1970 with a B.S. in Mathematics Education and has been active in Mathematics Education in western Pennsylvania. She agreed to answer our questions.

What mathematics program were you in at IUP?  Why did you choose that program? I started at IUP as a sophomore transfer student from the University of Pittsburgh. I was a mathematics/engineering major at Pitt and at first enrollment I really had no idea what to declare as a major. I toyed with computer science and pure mathematics. Dr. Woodard, who was my advisor, suggested education but I held off an official declaration until my junior year. In the meantime, I tutored elementary and high school students as a service project through my sorority and that was my light-bulb experience—I really enjoyed helping kids make sense of mathematics! I also knew then that I wanted to teach in Pittsburgh where the need was greatest. Just in case Pittsburgh didn’t hire me I also applied to US Steel in their computer systems department and IBM. All three jobs came through but US Steel was nightshift and IBM thought I was perfect for their marketing department—selling computers to schools. Not what I had in mind. This led me to Herron Hill Junior High School—9th grade general mathematics—and that began my education career—a decision I have never regretted.

What particular memories do you have of your days at IUP and your time in the IUP Mathematics Department? I have memories of entering my first mathematics class at IUP and thinking—I must be in the wrong place—there were only 15 people in the class. At Pitt we took math in huge auditoriums. This meant at IUP the professors would know me—and what I really knew—and whether I had done my homework! I remember that the professors were all dedicated and got to know us as people and were interested in our issues and concerns.

Other memories include sitting in the Oak Grove (eating a Capitol Roll) working on mathematics homework and it blew away in a sudden rain/wind storm—truly. This made me more sympathetic to my students’ excuses. I also worked in the duplicating center where professors would send their handouts and exams to be duplicated. (We had one Xerox machine and a lot of old multilith and collator machines). When I got the job through the work/study program I was told that this was a very important job for trustworthy and honest people because unscrupulous students might offer me money for copies of exams. I felt like I worked for the CIA. In three years–no one ever took the least interest in my job and I was never approached to compromise an exam.  What a disappointment. Lastly, I have memories (nightmares) of computer programming with keypunch cards in the basement of Sutton Hall.  Talk about obsolete knowledge.

What did you do immediately after graduating from IUP? What work have you been doing recently? I have been employed by the Pittsburgh Public Schools since graduation—you do the math. I have taught junior high, middle school, remedial and gifted mathematics courses. Currently, I am a Mathematics Curriculum Specialist in the Division of Instructional Support. I work with teachers in their classroom and plan and implement in-service sessions as professional development. I obtained a masters degree and K-12 mathematics supervisory certificate from Pitt and although I have completed all course work for my doctorate in mathematics education I remain ABD.

The exciting part of my job has been my involvement in many national mathematics initiatives. The New Standards Project, The New American Schools Project, America’s Choice, The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics Principles and Standards Academy, and Achieve. I was appointed to the National Advisory Board to the Voluntary 8th grade test before politics entered the picture and the testing program was abandoned. I also have been co-director of the Prime project (Pittsburgh Reform in Mathematics Education) a NSF sponsored project that promotes the implementation of standards-based curriculum, instruction and assessment. I am also active in statewide and local mathematics organizations and received the Mathematics Council of Western Pennsylvania service award for 2002.

Mathematics, in particular K-12 mathematics, is undergoing tremendous pressure form the “back to basics” group to return to an arithmetic, symbol manipulation curriculum—the curriculum most of us grew up with. I believe in a more balanced approach, one that includes skills, conceptual understanding, and problem solving. I have experienced increased achievement, understanding and interest in mathematics from my students using this more inclusive approach.

What thoughts do you have on your choice of a career related to Mathematics, or what advice might you have for students thinking about a choice of major? Mathematics is the key to success in the world of today. Being able to reason, deal with data, and communicate using mathematics is critical to research, technological and scientific careers. Mathematics teachers hold the key to enabling their students to become productive and successful citizens. I would recommend the teaching profession to anyone who loves mathematics.

(Continued on page 6)

 

(Raith profile continued from page 5)

 

We need good teachers with exciting and motivating ideas. In working with new teachers, I have noticed that IUP students are well prepared to teach mathematics in conceptual as well as procedural ways. The mathematics department is still doing an excellent job in preparing tomorrows teachers. One goal I have before I retire is to introduce myself at a social gathering as a mathematics specialist and not hear a litany of "I always hated math", "I can't do math", "I wanted to do ___________, but you had to take math"…

 

 

Retirements in 2002:

John Broughton and Maher Shawer

By Gary Stoudt

 

Dr. John Broughton III retired from the University on May 31, 2002 after 31 years of service. During his tenure at IUP, Dr. Broughton developed a reputation as a dynamic and enthusiastic teacher. He taught a wide variety of service courses effectively, including pre-calculus, calculus, and probability and statistics. He was also involved in teaching courses for majors, even if it required teaching out of his field of expertise. He was a frequent instructor of both linear algebra and history of mathematics courses for majors, and developed syllabi for these courses that earned him eligibility to teach them as writing intensive courses. His teaching of the History of Mathematics course is particularly impressive. The faculty know firsthand that it is a difficult course to teach well (how many people have volunteered to teach it over the years?), and no one else in the department was willing to take on the challenge at the time. His scholarly activity focused on research that would improve his knowledge base, both in mathematics and in pedagogy, and is directly related to the courses the department asked him to take on.

Dr. Broughton's record of service at IUP is outstanding.  He served on various department committees, including Evaluation and Tenure, Computer Usage, Scholarship, Nominations and Election, and several search committees. A highlight of his departmental involvement was his service as Mathematics Department Chairman from 1985 to 1990. At the College level, Dr. Broughton served on the Committee for Medical School Recommendations. He also served a term as Secretary/Treasurer of the Allegheny Mountain Section of the Mathematical Association of America.

Former faculty will remember that Dr. Broughton was a loyal APSCUF member, active since the time of the election of the organization as the bargaining agent for faculty. He was active at the state level, serving on the Budget Committee and a subcommittee of the Negotiations Committee. Locally, he served as the APSCUF representative to the IUP Budget Committee, as well as serving on Representative Council, the Executive Committee, and the Meet and Discuss Committee.

I remember John as a “no BS guy” who often after lengthy discussions in meetings would cut through the noise and get everybody back on track. I am also grateful to him for all the assistance he gave me when I first started teaching the History of Mathematics course. John  will be missed.

 

Dr. Maher Y. Shawer retired from the University on July 5, 2002 after 34 years of service. He made valuable contributions to the department and university during his career. Most of Dr. Shawer’s research has been in the area of statistics education with many presentations at international conferences. Much of Dr. Shawer’s academic reputation came from his extensive activity in coordinating IUP’s relationship with Ain Shams University in Cairo, Egypt. As a culmination of his work in this area, in 1997 Dr. Shawer received the Gold Medal for Lifetime Achievement and Service for Higher Education from Ain Shams University. I would also like to note that when he returned from Egypt he always brought back something to share with my children. Dr. Shawer has shared his expertise with the department, University, and community at large. He has been active in statistics education in the department, chairing the statistics committee for many years and helping to develop the applied statistics minor. He was also active in the graduate program, teaching numerous statistics courses and supervising three Masters theses. He has given workshops for the department and the APSCUF Professional Development Committee, and he has consulted with IUP’s Quantitative Literacy Program and the Indiana County Municipal Services Authority. Max always had something to say and a colorful way of saying it. He was a tireless advocate of his beloved statistics programs and was a jovial presence in Stright Hall. Our Egyptian connection lives on in Stright Hall, as Max’s nephew, Dr. Waleed Faraq, has just joined the Computer Science Department. We all wish Max well in his retirement, and we’ll see him at the homecoming parade!

 


IUP’s Mathematics Curriculum Through the Years, Part 5

Gary Stoudt

 

When we last left our story, there was a movement in the Commonwealth to make Indiana Normal strictly a school for the training of teachers.  Recall from last time:

At the normal school principals meeting in 1906, the majority opinion was for the schools to become strictly for the preparation of teachers. It was argued that those who were not preparing to teach not be admitted. This would avoid direct competition with the many colleges in Pennsylvania and establish the school’s market. The report of the meeting stated that “providing a body of professionally trained teachers for the people’s schools is our aim... we are not colleges, and we should not ape them...” [Juliette and Landon].

For the time being, Indiana did not follow the opinion of the majority. This did not last for long, because there are troubling times ahead.

The year 1910 brought with it another curriculum change approved by the Board of Principals of the State Normal Schools. The curriculum was now a four year course with each year consisting of three terms, Fall, Winter, and Spring. The mathematics requirement for all students consisted of three terms of Arithmetic (two freshman year with a review in the senior year), three terms of Algebra (freshman year), three terms of Geometry (sophomore year), two terms of Solid Geometry (junior year), one term of trigonometry (junior year), and one term of Surveying (senior year). The senior year also included a course in the methods of teaching arithmetic.

The Arithmetic syllabus is essentially the same as before. The Algebra syllabus has changed somewhat.

The object of this course in Algebra is to give the student a thorough knowledge of the principles of elementary Algebra and much work in practical applications thereof. This thoroughness of the course is desirable both for the students who expect to teach in the public schools and for those desiring to do advanced work. The work is planned to assist the student in his further study of mathematics and the study of the physical sciences. The culture value of Algebra is recognized and the student is lead to realize the beauties of the subject.[Catalog, 1910-11]

The topics studied are

  • fundamental operations and factoring,
  • fractions, including ratio and proportion,
  • simple equations with a study of graphs,
  • involution and evolution,
  • quadratic equations,
  • radical equations,
  • theory of exponents,
  • binomial theorems,
  • practical problems.

The course in Trigonometry includes the study of

  • trigonometric functions,
  • the right triangle,
  • goniometry (measuring the available range of motion or the position of a joint),
  • logarithms,
  • the oblique triangle,
  • practical problems with field work.

For surveying, the syllabus includes

  • study of instruments for office and field work,
  • land surveying,
  • triangulation,
  • leveling,
  • railroad work,
  • city surveying,
  • plotting, blue prints, copying, etc.

The course description of the Geometry course is quite lively and interesting.

        The required work in Geometry covers the ground outlined in Wentworth’s Plane Geometry. Solid Geometry is based on Wentworth’s Solid Geometry.

        The body of geometrical truth is an organized structure, the careful study of which has ever been a stimulus and a discipline to those who have pursued it. The prospective teacher receives training which is essential in his work as a teacher and in the pursuit of scientific studies. Among the mental and moral qualities which it is the aim of this course to develop are the following: Initiative, self-reliance, and the ability to cope with a new situation. The study of Geometry develops the habit of accurate reasoning, the habit of looking confidently for the solution of every problem, including those of everyday life, of discriminating between the essential features of a problem and those which are not essential.

        After a thorough study of the demonstrations of the author, the student takes up the demonstration of the original exercises. These he is able, with a few suggestions, to deal with;

(continued on page 8)

(Curriculum, continued from page 7)

this gives him self-reliance and power as he proceeds confidently and accurately. Such a course as this gives the student a mind trained to meet the problems which confront the teacher. [Catalog, 1910-11]

                Courses in Higher Mathematics (College Algebra, Analytic Geometry, and Calculus) are also offered for interested students. The texts used in the courses are Analytical Geometry- Muner and Allen; Arithmetic-Bailey, Hull; Calculus-Hardy; College Algebra-Wells; Geometry-Wentworth; Solid Geometry-Wentworth; Surveying-Wentworth; Trigonometry-Wentworth. This curriculum is in place until 1920. During this time the senior mathematics faculty members are James C. Smith Ph.B., Professor of Mathematics, and M.C. Gordon, M.S. Associate Professor of Mathematics. Smith earned a B.A. from Howard College in Alabama in 1896 and a  Ph.B. degree from the University of Chicago in 1903 and pursued graduate study there during the summers of 1904 and 1905. He served as principal of Evansville High School before coming to Indiana Normal. As before the assistants in mathematics were typically recent graduates of Indiana Normal who stayed for a year or two.

                Since 1912, financial pressure has been mounting at Indiana Normal. Other normal schools in Pennsylvania had been forced to transfer ownership to the Commonwealth, in fact ten of the thirteen had done so by 1917. Declining enrollments due to World War I exacerbated the situation. By 1920 Indiana had accumulated a debt of $200,000 and the interest payments were keeping the school in bad financial health. [Juliette and Landon]. A sale to the Commonwealth became a necessity and was duly arranged. Indiana Normal School became the State Normal School at Indiana (ISNS). Indiana was the last of state normal schools to remain privately owned. This change also greatly affected the curriculum, as Indiana could no longer hold out on the will of the Commonwealth to convert to a school solely for the training of teachers.

                State control brought a new curriculum to ISNS. Content courses were jettisoned in favor of methods courses. However, mathematics courses could be chosen as elective courses “with special reference to the group in which the teacher is preparing to teach and with the approval of the principal of the school.” [Catalog, 1920-21] This is the genesis of majoring in the teaching of a particular field that developed into what education curricula are today.

                There are now four curricula each consisting of two years of study: Group I (Kindergarten-Primary, grades K-3), Group II (Intermediate, grades 4-6), Group III (Junior High School, grades 7-9), and Group IV (Rural). The Rural curriculum remained in place until 1937. In Group I, the mathematics requirement consisted of one course in The Teaching of Number. For Group II and Group IV, the course was The Teaching of Arithmetic, and for Group II the course was The Teaching of Mathematics (the commercial and industrial applications of arithmetic). A Group III student could opt to take four electives, and for mathematics these courses were Solid Geometry, Plane and Spherical Trigonometry, Plane Trigonometry and Surveying, Intermediate Algebra, and Advanced Algebra.

                James C. Smith, Professor of Mathematics, is no longer a member of the faculty. It is unclear why he left, but a guess would be the radical curriculum change. M. C. Gordon remains as Associate Professor of Mathematics, joined by various assistants. During the summer of 1922, it is mentioned that Gordon attended summer school at Columbia University. In 1924 the second Ph.D. in mathematics joined the faculty. Frederic Wood joins the faculty as Professor of Mathematics. Wood is a 1912 graduate of the State Normal School in Terre Haute, Indiana, and received three degrees from the University of Wisconsin, B.A. in 1915, M.A. in 1916, and Ph.D. in 1923. Wood is the first true research mathematician to join the Indiana faculty. His dissertation is entitled “Group Velocity and the Propagation of Disturbances in Dispersive Media.” Wood previously was a field artillery lieutenant during World War I, and an instructor at Wisconsin. Perhaps not surprisingly, Wood lasted a total of one year at ISNS. Wood went on to make a name for himself, being listed in the ninth edition (1955) of American Men of Science. After ISNS Wood went to Lake Forest College, Wesleyan College (Georgia), and became Head of the Department of Mathematics and Mechanics at the University of Nevada, Reno, later becoming Dean of the College of Arts and Science there.

                In 1925 Gordon was joined by Olive S. Tilton. Tilton was also a graduate of the State Normal School in Terre Haute, Indiana.  She also earned a Ph.B. from the University if Chicago in 1917 and an M.A from Teachers’ College, Columbia University in 1924. The years immediately after the state took over were a time of decreasing enrollments and reduction of faculty positions to attrition. The College Preparatory Curriculum, which had coexisted since the founding with the higher education curricula, was eliminated. [Juliette and Landon]  Yet another change was on the horizon, however. This time, for the better….

Source: Ronald Juliette and Dale E. Landon, Indiana University of Pennsylvania: Our Homage and Love, The Donning Company, Virginia Beach, VA, 1991.

Thoughts as I approach retirement

By Jim Reber

I have so often asked other faculty members to write an article for the newsletter as they approach retirement, I don’t feel I have a choice. I need to write something. As I sit down to write, however, I have a clearer understanding of the mixed responses I received when I asked faculty to write a “farewell”. At this stage of life, both looking backward and looking forward can be disquieting.

As I look back over my career, I am a bit surprised at how few “big decisions” I have made. As I grew up, I lived with my family and one doesn’t “decide” where to go to high school. It was understood I would go to a church related school so “choosing Indiana Central College” didn’t seem much like a decision. Duke was a good school and they offered me more money to attend graduate school than anywhere else I applied, so going there did not seem like a “big decision”. I suppose the “choice” was whether to go to graduate school and where to apply for graduate school, but still, those didn’t seem much like choices but rather seemed like the inevitable.  One “big decision” was asking my present wife Clarice to marry me. That seemed like a choice and one I have not regretted. When I was looking for a job I had a choice between two temporary positions. Mel Woodard convinced me the position at IUP was likely to become permanent and it did. So there was the second “big decision”. But I guess the important thing is not to make a lot of “big decisions” but rather to make a few decisions and make the right choices. Certainly my decision to come to IUP has resulted in a long and pleasurable time. It is hard even to imagine where other choices might have led me.

As I look forward to problems that those who follow in my footsteps will have to resolve, two come to mind. The first problem is the increasing bi-modal nature of our math courses at IUP. Courses here have always been somewhat bi-modal, with good students and weak students and fewer in the middle. But the gap between good students who work hard and poor students (who neither work nor seem to care) appears more extreme. It is hard for a committed teacher to ignore the weaker students, yet that may be the appropriate path. The second problem is dealing with the unintended consequences of using graphing calculators that do algebra. One consequence appears to be diminished algebra skills on the part of students. I certainly would not have predicted, when we first required the TI92 calculator in Calculus, that one result would be more student algebra errors in the middle of a proof in Introduction to Mathematical Proof I. Those are two problems for the future. But I will leave IUP with the confidence that the mathematics faculty will resolve these and other challenges that come their way.

 

From the Office

By Elaine White

Those of you who passed through the Mathematics Department after 1972, may remember a short little secretary behind the desk in the Math Office. I’m still here. The department continues to change with the times. Faces change through retirements and newly hired faculty. And the use of technology continues to advance through all facets of life here in the office. We have lost a couple more familiar faces through retirements: Dr. John Broughton and Dr. Maher Shawer. Unfortunately, we have lost a retired faculty member, Dr. Wally Morrell passed away in December. Wally shared an office with Merle Stilwell on the second floor of Walsh hall. We were joined with some new faces with newly hired faculty members, Yu-Ju Kuo, Joseph Kosler, John Lattanzio and Tom Short. It is especially nice to have John back with us since he is an alumnus and received his bachelors’ degree from this department and IUP in 1990.

We have come a long with the use of technology in all phases of the office. The typewriter was replaced with a word processor and now with a pc. (We do still have a typewriter for those forms that haven’t been changed over.) The ditto machine and mimeograph machine have been replaced with a copier. But we haven’t made it to the paperless office that the techno prognosticators promised us, yet. The university has put the catalog on line and announced that they would no longer be distributing a paper one. They did do a few for the advisors. We have gone through quite a few computer systems for running the university – some of you stood in line for someone else to punch your schedule into the computer. Then you scheduled using the Sun system, followed by the COSMOS system. We are now working with Banner and coming in the next few years is a mandated state system wide program called SAP which is currently being written for SSHE’s specifications.

If you haven’t visited the department’s website yet, I hope that you take a few moments to do so. The URL is www.ma.iup.edu. All of the members of the department have web pages – even me (though mine is sadly in need of being up-dated!). Outside of the office, I keep busy with painting, sewing, collecting dolls, and learning to take digital pictures with my new camera.

I have lost touch with many of you since you graduated and started your “big adventure” but I would love to hear from you and catch up on your experiences. My email is emwhite@iup.edu or you can write to me here at the office. Talk to you later!


 

IUP Faculty

 

We have previously listed faculty members that have retired and we have listed new hires. Perhaps it is worthwhile to include a list of all present IUP faculty with their phones and IUP email addresses.

 

Professor                                              Phone                                                    IUP Email

 

Adkins, F A                                         724-357-3790                                      fadkins@iup.edu

Alarcón, F E                                        724-357-2206                                      falarcon@iup.edu

Anderson, C I                                     724-357-2600                                      ciander@iup.edu

Baker, J D                                             724-357-3795                                      jdbaker@iup.edu

Balenovich, D A                 724-357-2488                                      dabalen@iup.edu

 

Bossé, M J                                             724-357-3791                                      mbosse@iup.edu

Buriok, G M                                         724-357-2388                                      jburiok@iup.edu

Burkett, D A                                        724-357-4761                                      dburkett@iup.edu

Casagranda, A L                               724-357-2283                                      casagran@iup.edu

Delbrugge, G V                                   724-357-2420                                      dngl@iup.edu

 

Donley, H E                                         724-357-3792                                      hedonley@iup.edu

Dubovsky, R A                                   724-357-4762                                      beckyd@iup.edu

Early, R E                                             724-357-2479                                      reearly@iup.edu

Feldman, L M                                     724-357-4767                                      lmfeldmn@iup.edu

Frank, D H                                           724-357-2605                                      fnbb@iup.edu

 

Gorman, J L                                         724-357-4759                                      jgorman@iup.edu

Kosler, J S                                             724-357-7907                                      jkosler@iup.edu

Kuo, Y                                                   724-357-3797                                      yjkuo@iup.edu

Lamberski, B J                                     724-357-1281                                      blambers@iup.edu

Lamparski, H L                  724-357-3796                                      hll@iup.edu

 

Lattanzio, J J                                        724-357-4760                                      jjl@iup.edu

Maier, C E                                            724-357-3799                                      cmaier@iup.edu

Mitchell, G E                                       724-357-2305                                      gmitchell@iup.edu

Morgan, F W                                       724-357-4765                                      fwmorgan@iup.edu

Myers, J R                                             724-357-4764                                      jrmyers@iup.edu

 

Polka, M                                               724-357-4763                                      mpolka@iup.edu

Ray. P P                                                724-357-3798                                      bmagics@iup.edu

Reber, J C                                              724-357-3794                                      jreber@iup.edu

Sandbothe, R A                                  724-357-2389                                      rsandbot@iup.edu

Short, T H                                            724-357-4060                                      tshort@iup.edu

 

Steelman, J H                                      724-357-4766                                      steelman@iup.edu

Stempien, M M                                   724-357-3793                                      mmstemp@iup.edu

Stoudt, G S                                           724-357-2608                                      gsstoudt@iup.edu

Tully, L L                                             724-357-4768                                      ltully@iup.edu

Walker, E A                                         724-357-2479                                      erndog@iup.edu

 

Walker, J M                                          724-357-2741                                      jwalker@iup.edu

Zhang, J                                                724-357-4061                                      zhang@iup.edu


 

 

  • Mathematics Department
  • Stright Hall, Room 233
    210 South Tenth Street
    Indiana, PA 15705
  • Phone: 724-357-2608
  • Fax: 724-357-7908
  • Office Hours
  • Monday through Friday
  • 8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
  • 1:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.