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Lafayette will host the Eastern Pennsylvania and Delaware Section of the Mathematical Association of America Spring 2005 Meeting for the first time in over 20 years on Saturday.

“We were picked because of our central location and the generally high level of activity that our department has in the region,” says John Meier, professor of mathematics.

Although certain activities like faculty talks and student presentations are standard at every EPADEL meeting, Meier says Lafayette is going to add its own unique aspects to the conference.

“Lafayette is putting its own stamp on this meeting,” he says. “There are two events, the Math Bowl at the start of the conference and Game Hour at the end, that are regular events at Lafayette College, but which the rest of the region probably doesn’t know about.”

Meier says that the conference presents a great opportunity for students to broaden their experience in the academic world of mathematics.

“This is an excellent chance for our majors to get some exposure to a mathematics conference,” he says. “The EPADEL conferences are definitely on the friendly side of mathematics conferences, with talks that are often accessible in large part by strong students.”

One of the major events will be the presentation of the annual teaching award for the EPADEL section of the MAA. The award was renamed the James P. Crawford Teaching Award last year to honor Lafayette mathematics professor Jim Crawford, who died in May 2003.

“It was one of the many tributes that followed [his death],” Meier says. “Jim himself won the section’s teaching award and was very active in the local mathematics community.”

Meier was one of only two people in the nation to receive a prestigious Centennial Fellowship from the American Mathematical Society in 2003. He published five times in 2003 and 2004, including “The Growth of Trees” with coauthor Philip K. Hotchkiss for The College Mathematics Journal in March 2004. He has conducted geometry research with mathematics major Kevin Penderghest ’05 (Lindenwold, N.J.).

The schedule of conference events:

8:30-10 a.m., Pfenning Alumni Center Lobby: Registration
9-9:10 a.m., 224 Oechsle Hall: Welcoming remarks
9:10-10 a.m., 224 Oechsle Hall: Math Bowl
10-10:30 a.m., Oechle Hall lobby: Coffee & snacks break – MAA book display
10:30-11:30 a.m., 224 Oechsle Hall: The topology and geometry of reconfiguration, Robert Ghrist, University of Illinois
Concurrently — 211 and 223 Oechle Hall: Student papers
11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m., 224 Oechsle Hall: Conjugate Coupling Edward Burger, Williams College
12:30-12:45 p.m.: Epadel business meeting – president’s report, governor’s report, and awarding of the 2005 Crawford Prize
12:45-2 p.m., Wilson Room of Pfenning Alumni Center: Lunch
2-3 p.m.: Mapping class groups of surfaces: where algebra meets topology, Tara Brendle, Cornell University
Concurrently — 211 and 223 Oechsle Hall: Student papers
2:30-2:45 p.m.: Break
3-4 p.m., 224 Oechsle Hall: The CUPM Curriculum Guide 2004, David Bressoud, Macalester College
Concurrently — 223 Oechsle Hall: Game Hour for undergraduates
4-4:30 p.m., Oechle Hall lobby: Social time with refreshments
4:30-6 p.m., 223 Oechsle Hall: Section NExT discussion on extracurricular activities for math majors
Categorized in: Academic News