By Richard LeComte

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Sept. 30, 2020) — Instructors in the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Kentucky are combining technology, learning techniques honed by experience, and human interaction to provide multifaceted learning environments for their students.

The goal, as always, is to keep students engaged with hands-on instruction methods even if the current pandemic limits face-to-face class time.

“Students learn by working on problems, not just by listening,” said Alberto Corso, associate professor and director of undergraduate studies in the Department of Mathematics. “That’s what I tell all of my students. We all like to watch our favorite basketball teams play, but we can’t play with them unless we practice. We need to be on the court and practice


By Richard LeComte

Benjamin Braun, associate professor of mathematics in the University of Kentucky’s College of Arts & Sciences, received a $150,000 grant from the National Science Foundation to research geometric objects called polytopes.

Examples of polytopes are two-dimensional polygons; three-dimensional cubes, pyramids and prisms; and higher-dimensional extensions of these objects. Polytopes are used to find solutions for transportation problems, model possible outcomes of elections and investigate biological phenomena. Geometric properties of polytopes help planners model problems using computers and thus solve complicated problems. For example, volumes of polytopes can be used to compute the chance that a voting paradox will happen for a voting system.

“Polytopes have been studied


The College of Arts and Sciences is committed to learning and working environments that are diverse, inclusive, and equitable for students, staff, and faculty.

We stand in solidarity with those working to confront systemic racial injustice in our communities and in the United States. We recognize the disproportionate burden of racism and other forms of violence on many within our A&S community during this time. We affirm our support of faculty, students, staff, and alumni in standing against all forms of racism, discrimination, and bias.

During this time of pandemic and continued racism and violence that especially impact marginalized communities of color, we recognize the disproportionate impact on Black and African-American people. In the context of the deaths of Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd, and here in Kentucky, Breonna Taylor and David McAtee, we affirm that


By Richard LeComte

The College of Arts and Sciences Outstanding TA Awards recognize excellence in undergraduate instruction by teaching assistants. Fifteen teaching assistants were recognized for the 2019-2020  academic year .

Eligible students are current A&S graduate student teaching assistants in at least their second year of graduate work and must be responsible for instruction in some or all of a course offered by the College. The TAs recognized this year taught in courses offered through A & S departments and interdisciplinary programs. 

“Graduate Teaching Assistants are fundamental to the high-quality education that the College of Arts & Sciences provides to undergraduate students,” said Sarah M. Lyon, A&S associate dean for graduate studies. “I am routinely impressed with their hard work and the contributions they make to pedagogical

A picture of the Gaines Center building.

By Gabriela Antenore

The University of Kentucky Gaines Center for the Humanities has selected 12 undergraduate students as new scholars for the Gaines Fellowship Program.

The Gaines Fellowship is presented in recognition of outstanding academic performance, demonstrated ability to conduct independent research, an interest in public issues and a desire to enhance understanding of the human condition through the humanities. Founded in 1984 by a gift from John and Joan Gaines, the Gaines Center for the Humanities functions as a laboratory for imaginative and innovative education on UK’s campus. The Gaines Center is designed to enrich the study of the humanities at the University of Kentucky.

An outdoors photo of Yuke Wang.

By Whitney Hale

The University of Kentucky Office of Nationally Competitive Awards has announced that sophomore  Yuke Wang has received a Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship. The UK College of Arts & Sciences student is among 396 students nationwide selected to receive the 2020-21 Goldwater Scholarship.

This year's Goldwater Scholars were selected based on academic merit from a field of 1,343 mathematics, science and engineering students who were nominated by the faculties of 461 of the nation's colleges and universities.

Wang, who calls Lexington home, is pursuing majors in physics and mathematics in the 

This Living Learning Program gives freshmen a mentored head start on the way to majoring in the sciences and mathematics

By Richard LeComte

Started in 2015, the STEMCats Living Learning Program has helped students majoring within the many and varied areas of the sciences or mathematics find their way to success at UK. And STEMCats peer mentors are a big part of that effort. 

“I have a group chat with my mentees about how things are going,” said Keanu Exum, a STEMCats peer mentor majoring in biology and neuroscience. “I want to make myself known to my mentees — that I am a resource for them.” 

Getting students situated in STEMCats is having a positive effect on the academic careers of the participants, says a study conducted by Carol D. Hanley of International Programs in the College of Agriculture, Food and Environment. STEMCats is a program

A photo of Nathaniel Stapleton.
  By Madison Dyment and Jenny Wells-Hosley     One of the strongest aspects of the University of Kentucky's teaching faculty is their numerous research ventures that further their field. Nathaniel Stapleton in the UK College of Arts and Sciences' Department of Mathematics is one such faculty member. He recently received two grants for “new tools in chromatic homotopy theory,” a project funded by the National Science Foundation. 

The awards include an NSF standard grant and a grant from the United States-Israel Binational Science Foundation. The first provides summer research funding with support for a graduate and undergraduate student as well as travel funds.


By Jenny Wells-Hosley


University of Kentucky freshman Lucas Etter still remembers the first time he solved a Rubik's cube — it was exactly 10 years ago to this day.

"I first found a Rubik's cube in my grandparents' basement when I was 8, and my first time completing it was Sept. 27, 2009. So, I have been solving the cube for over half my life."

From the moment he picked up the cube, Etter was intrigued. He started watching tutorials on YouTube about how to solve it. After a few weeks of serious dedication, he finally solved it. He then began studying algorithms, and within five years (at age 13) he became a world-class speedcuber.

Today, Etter is one of the fastest cubers in the world, being able to solve a cube in about six seconds, on average. He holds four national championships and four world records within the World Cube Association,


By Maddi Dyment

The UK College of Arts and Sciences would like to congratulate Dr. Nathan Druivenga, arecipient of the A&S Outstanding Teacher Award! Druivenga is a lecturer for the Mathematics Department at the University of Kentucky. Since beginning his teaching career at UK in 2016, he maintains a large focus on teaching introductory-level math courses. Druivenga received his master’s degree from Indiana University and his Ph.D. in Mathematics from the University of Iowa. His research specializes in quantum topology with a focus on knot invariants.

We would like to thank Dr. Druivenga for his exemplary work elevating the UK A&S learning community and congratulate him on this achievement!



From the Association for Women in Mathematics.

The Association for Women in Mathematics (AWM) has over 100 student chapters at colleges and universities across the country and around the world. AWM Student Chapters develop their yearly programming to meet the needs and interests of their chapter. The AWM Student Chapter Awards highlight and celebrate the unique and meaningful programs that Chapters design. AWM’s Student Chapter Awards are for (1) scientific excellence, (2) professional development, (3) fundraising and sustainability, and (4) community outreach. The University of Kentucky AWM Student Chapter is the 2019 recipient of the Association of Women in Mathematics’ Community Outreach Award.

The AWM Student Chapter at the University of Kentucky is receiving this award in recognition of its outstanding work in developing the Appalachian Initiative for


By Hannah Edelen

Assistant Professor of Mathematics Christopher Manon (center) works with students in the math lab. Photos by Kris Chappel and Wayne Cross.

Over the last few years, the University of Kentucky Department of Mathematics in the UK College of Arts and Sciences has been building and expanding a lab for undergraduates to conduct mathematics research. This project, spearheaded by Assistant Professor Christopher Manon, is a collaborative project with many other professors in the department leading their own research projects, each with their own team of undergraduate students. The projects vary wildly and include attempting to understand the topography of Minecraft, quilting and designing computer software to help compute formal power series. Each of the research projects gives mathematics undergraduates a chance to learn,


By Hannah Edelen and Jennifer T. Allen

Margaret Readdy, left, walks with her former student Quiyana Murphy, a 2018 UK graduate. Photo courtesy of the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, New Jersey.

Margaret Readdy, professor of mathematics in the University of Kentucky College of Arts and Sciences, was recently recognized for her work as the academic program manager for the Women and Mathematics Program (WAM) at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, New Jersey. Readdy helps organize WAM, a week-long summer workshop of lectures, mentoring and career development by prominent female mathematicians directed to female undergraduate, graduate, postdoc and junior faculty attendees.

The workshop, which was begun in 1993 by mathematicians Chuu-Lian Terng (University of California, Davis) and Abel Prize winner


By Lori Adams

The University of Kentucky has released its Dean's List for the spring 2019 semester. A total of 6,562 students were recognized for their outstanding academic performance. 

To make a Dean’s List in one of the UK colleges, a student must earn a grade-point average of 3.6 or higher and must have earned 12 credits or more in that semester, excluding credits earned in pass-fail classes. Some UK colleges require a 3.5 GPA to make the Dean’s List.

The full Dean's List can be accessed by visiting:


By Whitney Hale

Tom Shelton, of Oregonia, Ohio, is a junior majoring in physics and mathematics.

The University of Kentucky Office of Nationally Competitive Awards has announced that juniors Angela Jones and Tom Shelton and senior Eura Shin have been awarded Barry M. Goldwater Scholarships. The three UK students are among 496 students nationwide selected to receive the 2019 Goldwater Scholarship.

This year's Goldwater Scholars were selected based on academic merit from a field of 1,223 mathematics, science and engineering students who were nominated by the faculties of 443 of the nation's colleges and universities.

The Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Program was


By Whitney Hale, Ellie Wnek and Hannah Edelen

Senior Dealla Samadi discovered a missing piece of the book "La Reine Albemarle," which was published posthumously without the segment. Her discovery has led to an article published in a French philosophy journal.

Seven interns in the University of Kentucky Libraries' Special Collections Research Center (SCRC) Learning Lab will represent UK at the second World Conference of Undergraduate Research (World CUR).

These students will travel to Oldenburg, Germany, May 23-25, to present their research, discuss global issues and create an international research partnership. Funding for their travel is provided through the 


The University of Kentucky Math Lab was founded by mathematics professor Chris Manon in order to support and coordinate undergraduate students research in mathematics. Currently, there are 19 students working in four research teams. Additionally, there are two groups working on 2D and 3D visualization projects. These groups will present the results of their work at an Undergraduate Symposium. The event is scheduled for April 26, 1-3 pm in CB 245.






By Ryan Girves

Award winners are from left, front row: Jennifer Osterhage, Rachel Carr, Anna Voskresensky, Benjamin Braun, Suzanne Smith. Back row: Abraham Prades-Mengibar, Luc Dunoyer, Shane Clark and Sarah Wilson. Not pictured: Amy Taylor. Mark Cornelison | UK Photo.

The University of Kentucky recognized exceptional faculty and teaching assistants with the Outstanding Teaching Awards during the 2019 UK Faculty Awards Ceremony held Thursday, April 18.

The Outstanding Teaching Awards annually recognize faculty and graduate teaching assistants who go above and beyond what is expected and demonstrate outstanding performance in the classroom or laboratory. Selected via nomination, candidates were reviewed by a selection committee empaneled by the Office for Faculty Advancement 


By Hannah Edelen

Laura DeMarco, a professor in the Department of Mathematics at Northwestern University, will deliver the 2018-19 Hayden Howard Lecture. Hosted by the University of Kentucky College of Arts and Sciences' Department of Mathematics, the lecture will take place 3:30 p.m. Thursday, April 11, in 106 White Hall Classroom Building. DeMarco will deliver a lecture titled “Complex Dynamics and Arithmetic Distribution.”

“I will explain a notion of arithmetic equidistribution that has recently found application in the study of complex dynamical systems,” DeMarco said. “It was first introduced about 25 years ago by Szpiro-Ullmo-Zhang to analyze the geometry and arithmetic of abelian varieties. In 2011, Matt Baker and I used the theory to study periodic points of maps on P^1. In this talk, I will explain some dynamical questions that were inspired by questions


By Hannah Edelen

Tara Holm, a mathematician and professor at Cornell University, will deliver the 2018-19 J.C. Eaves Lecture. Hosted by the University of Kentucky Department of Mathematics, the lecture will take place at 5 p.m. Thursday, March 21, in 208 White Hall Classroom Building.

Holm, a 2012 Fellow of the American Mathematical Society and former Visiting Fellow at both Oxford and Princeton, will deliver a lecture on “Understanding Symplectic Geometry Through Polytopes and Lattice Points.”

“Symplectic geometry, the natural geometry of classical mechanics, is floppier than Riemannian geometry, but more rigid than topology. I will give an overview of this floppy/rigid spectrum,” Holm said. “I will conclude with how some of my recent work, joint with Daniel Cristofaro-Gardiner, Alessia Mandini and Ana Rita Pires, comes to feature continued fractions


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