2011 meeting of the Michigan MAA & MichMATYC
May 6-7, 2011
Western Michigan University (Kalamazoo, MI)
Program information - Plenary speakers
Erik Demaine, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
"Algorithms Meet Art, Puzzles, and Magic"
Erik Demaine is Associate Professor and Esther and Harold E. Edgerton Professor in computer science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Demaine's research interests range throughout algorithms, from data structures for improving web searches to the geometry of understanding how proteins fold to the computational difficulty of playing games. He received a MacArthur Fellowship (2003) as a "computational geometer tackling and solving difficult problems related to folding and bending - moving readily between the theoretical and the playful, with a keen eye to revealing the former in the latter." Recently, Demaine published a book about folding, together with Joseph O'Rourke, called Geometric Folding Algorithms: Linkages, Origami, Polyhedra, (Cambridge University Press, 2007). He has also co-edited Tribute to a Mathemagician (A K Peters, 2003), in honor of the influential mathemagician Martin Gardner.
Michael Dorff, Brigham Young University
"Moving through dimensions: shortest paths, soap bubbles, and when does the derivative of the area equal perimeter?"
Michael Dorff is associate chair in the Mathematics Department at Brigham Young University (BYU). After teaching high school for 4 years, he earned an MS degree at the Univ. of New Hampshire and in 1997 a PhD from the Univ. of Kentucky in complex analysis. He taught at the Univ. of Missouri-Rolla before accepting a position in 2000 at BYU. In 2005 he founded the BYU mathematics REU. In 2005-2006 he was a Fulbright Scholar in Poland. In 2007 he founded CURM, the Center of Undergraduate Research in Mathematics partially supported by a $1.3 million NSF grant. He is married with 5 daughters. His interests include reading (Dostoyevsky and Dickens through Stegner and Saramago), traveling (invite him to visit you!), running (even at 3 am on the streets in Utah), music (classical, Norah Jones), and soccer.
Dan LaDue, Michigan Department of Education
"Common Core State Standards Initiative for Mathematics in Michigan"
Dan is an Education Consultant with the Michigan Department of Education with responsibilities specific to high school mathematics. Additionally, he is a doctoral student in Michigan State University's Measurement & Quantitative Methods PhD program. He spent 14 years as a building level educator serving as a high school assistant principal, mathematics department chair, and classroom teacher. He earned his MA in K-12 Administration from Michigan State University and his BS in Education from Western Michigan University. He has been happily married for 14 years and is the proud parent of two boys ages 13 and 9.
Ivars Peterson, Mathematical Association of America
Ivars Peterson is Director of Publications and Communications at the Mathematical Association of America. As an award-winning mathematics writer, he previously worked at Science News for more than 25 years and served as editor of Science News Online and Science News for Kids. His books include The Mathematical Tourist, Islands of Truth, Newton's Clock, The Jungles of Randomness, and Fragments of Infinity: A Kaleidoscope of Math and Art. In 1991, Ivars Peterson received the Joint Policy Board for Mathematics Communications Award recognizing him for his "exceptional ability and sustained effort in communicating mathematics to a general audience." During the spring semester of 2008, Ivars Peterson served as the Basler Chair of Excellence for the Integration of the Arts, Rhetoric, and Science at East Tennessee State University in Johnson City.
Paul Zorn, St. Olaf College
Paul Zorn is a professor of mathematics at Saint Olaf College and President of the MAA. Born and raised in India, Zorn moved to the U.S. to attend Washington University in Saint Louis, majoring in mathematics and English. He did his PhD, in several complex variables, at the University of Washington, Seattle, under the direction of Edgar Lee Stout. In 1981 he joined the faculty of St. Olaf, where he chaired the Department of Mathematics, Statistics, and Computer Science. He has also taught at Purdue University. Zorn's professional interests include complex analysis, mathematical exposition, textbook writing, and the role of mathematics among the liberal arts. He is also interested in using computer graphics and computer algebra systems to help students learn, explore, and "own" mathematical ideas. Zorn has served on many MAA committees and programs over the years. From 1996 to 2000, he was Editor of MAA's expository journal Mathematics Magazine. His latest textbook, Understanding Real Analysis, was published by AK Peters in 2010.