Message from the Chair
Patrick Dowling
Dear Alumni and Friends,
In this issue of our newsletter, you can read about recent developments in the Department of Mathematics as well as some of the many accomplishments of our students and faculty.
It is amazing how resilient and adaptive students and faculty have become over the last two years. Classes taught and office hours held via Zoom, once thought to be almost impossible, have now become routine. The changes to instruction that we were forced to make will have a lasting positive impact on the manner in which we teach mathematics and in the manner in which our students learn mathematics.
One item that has not changed over the last two years is the fact that our students and faculty are always interested in what our former students are doing. So, as I have written in previous editions on our newsletter, if you have some time to spare, please drop us a short note telling us what life after Miami is like, how Miami prepared you for this life, and what are your plans for the future.
We are extremely grateful for the financial contributions we receive from our alumni and friends, but our students also benefit greatly from hearing stories about our alumni and getting a glimpse at what life might have in store for them after graduation.
Best wishes for the future, and please keep in touch.
Patrick Dowling
Chair and Professor

Student News
Thomas Lamkin Sean Longbrake
Thomas Lamkin (pictured left, above) was selected for the Undergraduate Summer Scholar program for summer 2020. He presented findings of his research on Poisson superalgebras in a poster session at the 2021 JMM (held virtually). His paper on the topic is currently under review. For the 2021-2022 academic year, Thomas was selected as a Dean's Scholar and is conducting research on quantum matrices. His poster on this research was selected for presentation at the 2022 JMM. Thomas is currently applying for Ph.D. programs in mathematics.
Sean Longbrake (right, above) worked on research problems in extremal combinatorics during summer 2021 and fall 2021 under the supervision of Dr. Tao Jiang and his work has resulted in two research papers. Sean is also currently applying to Ph.D. programs in mathematics.
Thomas and Sean both presented their work at the College of Arts and Science's Discover the Sciences event in September 2021.
Alumni News
Obed Amo
Leah Simon
Megan Wawro (website) M.A. ’05 received a Ph.D. in Math and Science Education at UC San Diego and San Diego State University in 2011. She received the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers in August 2019. She also received an NSF CAREER grant: "An Interdisciplinary Study of Learning: Student Understanding of Linear Algebra in Physics." Megan has been a faculty member in the Department of Mathematics at Virginia Tech since 2011 and was promoted to associate professor in 2016.
Bob Krueger '19 (currently a Ph.D. student at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign) was awarded a National Science Foundation graduate fellowship.
The annual Math/Stat Alumni career panel was held on Zoom on Nov. 3, 2021. The alumni panelists included:
  • Marisol Vargas '14
  • Dr. John Harris M.S. '96, Ph.D. Clemson
  • AJ Tatro '17
  • Caroline Kren ’02, M.S. ’05
  • Jesse Pratt M.S. ’09
S M Mustaquim M.S. ’21, is currently a Ph.D. student in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics at Auburn University.
Obed Amo M.S. ’21 is currently a Ph.D. student in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics at Old Dominion University. Both S M and Obed completed their masters projects with Dr. Ebrahim Sarabi in the summer of 2021. 
Leah Simon ’17, MAT ’21 won first place in the age 19+ category for the 2021 Desmos Global Math Art Contest. See her contribution that won over thousands of applicants from all over the world. Be sure to play with the animation! Below are the comments from the judges:
This graph takes advantage of nearly all the ways Desmos can be used to create shapes. There are polygons building up the shadows on the mountain, inequalities filling in a gradient of snow on the slopes, and a hue of blue for the ski lift windows. The trees come from vertical sinusoids, while the frame around the entire scene is decorated with explicit equations of lines. Parametric paths provide a way down the mountain for each individual skier, themselves simple images created in an earlier graph. As beautiful as the view is from afar, zooming in reveals new details and delights—who knew a skiing cow could face such peril? Hit play, sit back, and enjoy the cycle; then zoom in and watch it all again!
Faculty News
Ebrahim Sarabi (website) received a National Science Foundation research grant 2021-2024.
Louis DeBiasio (website) received a National Science Foundation research grant 2020-2023.
Altogether, five faculty members of the Department of Mathematics are currently supported by active National Science Foundation grants.
Anna Ghazaryan (website) was invited to be on the organizing committee of the One World Dynamics Seminar.
Alumni Stories
Audrey Altieri ’14, MAT ’17 ( recently graduated with a Masters of Public Policy (MPP) specific to Education Policy from Vanderbilt University (May 2021). She was hired as an Education Consultant for the North Carolina State Board of Education and accepted as a Strategic Data Project Fellow at Center for Education Policy Research at Harvard University.
What she says about her Miami experience:
I would not be where I am today without my Miami experience. I am still in contact with my cohort peers and professors today. They shaped my experiences as a teacher which continue to drive the work I do toward more equitable public education.
Robert Knurek ’14, MAT ’18 ( writes:
Since graduating from Miami University, I moved to Denver, Colorado and started a doctorate program at University of Colorado Denver. I am in my second year of the program and am obtaining a PhD in Mathematics Education. I plan to graduate in 2024 and hopefully find a position at a university where I can work with preservice math teachers.
Additionally, I am currently working for Dr. Heather Johnson (my advisor) on an NSF-funded project called ITsCRITiCAL. I am the project manager for this project. ITsCRITiCAL addresses a significant problem in U.S. undergraduate mathematics education: the overemphasis on finding the right answer. We intend to decrease the emphasis on answer finding, and increase the emphasis on mathematical reasoning in high enrollment lower division mathematics courses.
Lastly, I was just recently published (for the first time!) in the Ohio Journal of School Mathematics. The article is called "Interrogating Data to Explore Digital Inequity." It presents a statistics lesson about the digital divide that incorporates the GAISE II framework. Students use FCC data to analyze broadband access across the country and learn about issues of digital inequity.
I have great memories of learning from the math education "dream team" of Dr. Harper, Dr. Cox, Dr. Edwards, Dr. Nirode, Dr. Keiser, Dr. Wanko, and Dr. D'Ambrosio. These professors are great people and amazing educators.
Delaney Aydel M.A. ’16 ( writes:
After leaving Miami, I completed an MS in Mathematics at Temple University in Philadelphia. As of this fall, I am an upper school teacher of mathematics, statistics, and computer science at the Key School in Annapolis, Maryland.
Kyle Loftus ’19, M.S. ’21 ( writes:
My memories are almost exclusively late nights staring at blackboards in Bachelor or at my laptop typing up homework after I finally have (what I thought to have been) solutions haha! Experience since at Missouri is pretty much identical as well lol…
Dane Linsky M.S. ’21 ( is currently working as a machine learning focused data scientist in telecomm.
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Our faculty come from all over the world and have a strong commitment to both research and teaching.
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