Thursday, February 16, 2012


While I watched several of my current and former students interacting in the Math Lab this morning, I realized how envious I am of their undergraduate experience.

Though I had good (some very good) professors, none were nearly so dedicated to my success as most of my colleagues in this department are to our students' success. I was never encouraged to do an REU, or to perform undergraduate research. I was never encouraged to attend and present at conferences. I was never given much guidance regarding grad school, and life beyond. For my students, this is all standard.

Though I had a few wonderful friends who shared my math major with me, indeed we were few, maybe ten or so the whole while I was in the program (all years included). The uppermost-level classes had three or four students, never more. My students have nearly a hundred peers in the program, and even the smallest 400-level courses claim over a dozen students...some more than two.

Though we had a satisfactory lounge and a serviceable computer lab, both of which served our needs for space, we had no "home" in the department. We were wanderers, itinerants. My students have the Math Lab, a warm and welcoming place where everybody knows everybody else, and there's never a shortage of assistance, support, and friendship.

They've got it pretty good.


Matt S said...

In my undergrad chem dept., we had the Fishbowl where all the tutors and students hung out.

Angela V-C said...

Isn't community wonderful. And now I'm jealous of of that nice community your students have too!

Anonymous said...

I LOVE the math lab. Honestly, I am not sure where I would be in my educational career without it. It's one of my favorite places, and I am not ever a Math Major.