More than 20 years ago, on my second day on the job, I told Uri Treisman that I’d never, uh, studied calculus. His response? “It’s not too late.” Before I started working here, I hadn’t understood that math is a language. The most precise language we have for capturing reality.
As professor of mathematics and department chair at Lakeland Community College in Kirtland, Ohio, Rikki worked diligently to promote active learning for her students and to bring technology into the curriculum. Among other activities, she is the author of two textbooks, has served as president of the American Mathematical Association of Two-Year Colleges (AMATYC), and co-edited the DCMP volume Emerging Issues in Mathematics Pathways (2019).
My high school chemistry teacher laughed when I told him I wanted to major in math or science in college. He told me those were career paths for boys. I’m glad I didn’t listen to him and proud that I went on to teach AP Chemistry and author a book of chemistry activities. There is no mission more important than nurturing the intellect and aspirations of children.
My mother taught kindergarten for more than 25 years, instilling the importance of education in the Engler household from an early age. Even though I didn’t follow her path into the education field, I have worked my entire adult life educating my colleagues on proper grammar, spelling, and punctuation. My goal is to eradicate excessive use of commas and incorrect implementation of hyphens (particularly following an adverb in –ly).
Philip Uri Treisman is a University Distinguished Teaching Professor, professor of mathematics, and professor of public affairs at The University of Texas at Austin. He is the founder and executive director of the University’s Charles A. Dana Center, an organized research unit of the College of Natural Sciences.