We are sad to note the death of Professor Emeritus Frank Olver, who passed away on April 23, 2013 at the age of 88. Frank was an expert on numerical analysis and special functions, and editor of the NIST Digital Library of Mathematical Functions, a great mathematical resource. His book on Asymptotics and Special Functions is still considered a mathematical classic. Frank retired from the University of Maryland in 1992, but continued to work on mathematics until his death. He received the Gold Medal of the US Department of Commerce in 2011.
Maryland sophomore Stephen Randall, a double major in mathematics and physics, is one of three University of Maryland students to win Barry Goldwater scholarships this year. The Barry Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Program was established by Congress in 1986 to honor Senator Barry M. Goldwater and to provide a continuing source of highly qualified scientists, mathematicians, and engineers.
Professor Doron Levy, currently the Associate Chair for Undergraduate Studies, has been named a Distinguished Scholar-Teacher for 2013-2014. The Distinguished Scholar-Teacher Program, established in 1978, honors a small number of faculty members each year who have demonstrated notable success in both scholarship and teaching. Distinguished Scholar-Teachers make a public presentation on a topic within their scholarly discipline, and receive an honorarium of $5000 to support their professional activities.
According to the Simons Foundation statement: "Research leaves from classroom teaching and administrative obligations can provide strong intellectual stimulation and lead to increased creativity and productivity in research. The Simons Fellows program is intended to increase the opportunity for such leaves and to make leaves more productive by enabling extension of sabbatical leaves from one academic term to a full academic year."
Trivisa is going to use her fellowship to spend her upcoming sabbatical at the University of California, Berkeley (Fall 2013) and École Normale Supérieure de Cachan (Spring 2014). Koralov's plans are not completely set yet but he plans to make several short-term visits to various institutions. Last year's Simons award winners included former department member Richard Schwartz.
Three of our younger faculty, Maria Cameron, Karin Melnick, and Yanir Rubinstein, have just won prestigious awards. Maria is the recipient of a DARPA Young Faculty Award for 2012 for her work on "Methods for the Study of Rare Events". "The objective of the DARPA Young Faculty Award (YFA) program is to identify and engage rising research stars in junior faculty positions at U.S. academic institutions and expose them to Department of Defense needs as well as DARPA’s program development process." Karin is the recipient of an NSF CAREER grant on rigidity properties in geometry. To quote the NSF description, "The Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program is a Foundation-wide activity that offers the National Science Foundation's most prestigious awards in support of junior faculty who exemplify the role of teacher-scholars through outstanding research, excellent education and the integration of education and research within the context of the mission of their organizations." Yanir is the recipient of a Sloan Research Fellowship for 2013. These fellowships are given annually to the most promising scientists in North America no more than six years from completion of their most recent Ph.D. "Fellows are selected on the basis of their independent research accomplishments, creativity, and potential to become leaders in the scientific community through their contributions to their field." Congratulations to all three of Maria, Karin, and Yanir!