active teaching with sarah-marie

Dramatis Personae

Who are the people that make MathILy happen?

Mostly it's students (perhaps you?), but there are also instructors (former instructors here, and for current instructors see just a bit below).
We are assisted by the members of our Advisory Amalgam.
The program itself is a project of the nonprofit organization Mathematical Staircase, Inc. which has a board of directors.

Here is the 2018 lineup:

dr. sarah-marie belcastro, MathILy director and Lead Instructor (contact sarah-marie)
sarah-marie earned her Ph.D. in mathematics from the University of Michigan in 1997 after majoring in mathematics and astronomy at Haverford College. Among her research areas, she is most passionate about topological graph theory. sarah-marie has been faculty at several institutions, ranging from small colleges to large universities, and she's been a major believer in discovery-based learning since her teacher training at Michigan. In addition to teaching at the college level, sarah-marie teaches enrichment classes at the Art of Problem Solving. sarah-marie taught as a senior staff member at the Hampshire College Summer Studies in Mathematics for 11 summers and co-directed that program for 4 summers. In summer 2012, she created and taught Mathematics Triple classes for UMass-Amherst; she is the inaugural director of MathILy and has taught there since 2013. She wrote the introductory textbook Discrete Mathematics with Ducks, which has much of the same tone students will find at MathILy. You might run into sarah-marie at HMMT or ARML (Penn State).


Dr. Thomas Hull, Lead Instructor
Tom earned his Ph.D. in mathematics in 1997 and specializes in the mathematics of origami, which has applications ranging from solar panels to automobile airbags to self-assembling polymers. He has earned tenure at one college and one university (so far) and has used more and more inquiry-based learning in college classes as he has advanced in his career. Tom taught at the Hampshire College Summer Studies in Mathematics for 15 summers, and at MathILys 2013--16.

Dr. Hannah Alpert, Lead Instructor
Hannah earned her Ph.D. from MIT in 2016 and is now a postdoc at Ohio State University. She is currently working in geometry and authored/co-authored 6 mathematical research papers before starting graduate school. Hannah has taught at MathPath and at Mathcamp and at the Boston Math Circle and at every instance of MathILy; she describes her preferred mode of teaching as 'chaos.'


Dr. Nate Harman, Lead Instructor
Nate earned his Ph.D. from MIT in 2017, ostensibly specializing in representation theory, and is now a postdoc at the University of Chicago. He has taught at MathILys 2014 and 2015, at the UMass-Amherst Mathematics Triple and at the Hampshire College Summer Studies in Mathematics, and has a personal relationship with Batman.

Dr. Emily Peters, Lead Instructor
Emily earned her Ph.D. in math from Berkeley in 2009, where she studied operator algebras (like linear algebra, only more so), proof by pictures, and knots. After uncountably many* postdoctoral positions, she's now an assistant professor at Loyola University, Chicago. She is married to a fellow mathematician, and they have two kids, ages 6 and 3. Emily knits, weaves, sews, reads, and can do one pushup and the monkey bars. She taught at MathILy 2017.

*not really.


Dr. Brian Freidin, Lead Instructor
Brian just earned his Ph.D. from Brown University studying differential geometry. He did research as an undergraduate at the University of Illinois through the Geometry Lab and the Center for Complex Systems Research. He has taught at the Hampshire College Summer Studies in Mathematics and MathILys 2015--2017.

Dr. Adam Marcus, Lead Instructor
Adam earned his Ph.D. from Georgia Tech in 2008 and is currently an assistant professor at Princeton. He has been proudly "social media free'' for nearly 10 years, which has allowed him to dedicate more time to his hobby of eating Icee-Pops.

Corrine Yap, Apprentice Instructor
Corrine is a mathematics graduate student at Rutgers University planning to specialize in discrete mathematics. She graduated in May 2016 from Sarah Lawrence College, where she concentrated on both mathematics and theatre. Although on a Ph.D track, she still hopes to pursue her acting and playwriting interests; her main project is a one-woman show about Sofia Kovalevskaya that incorporates math, music, movement, and foreign languages (see her website for production photos!). She was the MathILy PRiME in 2014 and an Apprentice Instructor in 2015, 2016, and 2017.


Josh Mundinger, Apprentice Instructor
Josh is an undergraduate at Swarthmore College, where he is a math and music major. He loves to listen to and play the piano, and can often be found singing Beethoven to himself. He participated enthusiastically in MathILy 2013 and was an Apprentice Instructor for MathILy 2017.

Gideon Leeper, Apprentice Instructor
Gideon is an undergraduate at the California Institute of Technology studying math. He participated in MathILy 2013 and 2014, and has since been a teaching assistant for a few courses at Caltech. He currently spends a lot of time trying to understand what computers can and can't do.


Anila Yadavalli, Apprentice Instructor
Anila is a fifth year Ph.D. student at North Carolina State University. She completed her B.S. in Mathematics at University of California, San Diego. She has taught a variety of courses at NCSU and has recently started implementing inquiry based activities after attending a workshop at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo. When she's not in her office teaching and learning math, you can find her bouldering at her local climbing gym, cooking vegetarian food, or watching cake decorating videos.

Connor Ahlbach, Apprentice Instructor
Connor is a fifth-year Mathematics graduate student at the University of Washington doing research in algebraic combinatorics. He also enjoys teaching, especially linear algebra, and has ideas for improving the linear algebra curriculum. Outside of mathematics, he likes practicing aikido and playing Magic the Gathering. He has also seen every episode of the "The Simpsons" between Season 1 and Season 26, inclusive.

Namrata Basu, PRiME (Protector and Responder in the MathILy Environment)
Namrata is a Math major and Statistics minor at Bryn Mawr College. She has loved Math since she was four! If she's not doing college work or at her campus job, she can be found watching dog videos or cricket (the sport no one in America knows about).

Kimball Strong, PRiME (Protector and Responder in the MathILy Environment)
Kimball is an undergraduate at UC Berkeley majoring in math with a minor in computer science. When he's not doing math (and sometimes even when he is), he can be found singing or cooking (or both).

MathILy is a project of the nonprofit organization Mathematical Staircase, Inc..