Past Events: 2007 Banquet
University of Massachusetts - Lowell Chapter of Sigma Xi Local Events
News and Events
2007 Annual Sigma Xi Banquet
2 May, 2007
Officers of the Local Chapter
Officers of the UMass
Lowell chapter of the Society of Sigma Xi with Banquet speaker, Dr. Bob Devaney.
From the left: Dr. Aram Karakashian,
Awards Officer; Dr.
Gil Brown, At-Large (Engineering); Dr. Bob Gamache, Vice President;
Jim Whitten, Secretary;
Dr. Devaney; Dr.
Art Mittler, Treasurer; Dr.
Mary Elizabeth Hooker, At-Large (Health and Environment);
Ms Elizabeth Fortin, Chapter Administrative Assistant; and
Dr. Bob Tamarin, President. Missing are Dr. Sandy McDonald, At-Large (Cehmistry)
and Dr. Rick Hochberg, At-Large (Biology).
from Tufts University
We are joined by four
Chemistry colleagues from the Tufts University Chapter. From the left: Graduate
Students Nkeng Asong and Patrick Bisson, who are working with Dr. Mary Shultz
(next in photo). To her left is Bob Tamarin, local chapter President and then
Tufts University Professor Sam Kounaves.
Guests from Andover
Also visiting the Banquet
were UMass Lowell Math Professor, Dr. Raj Prasad (center, back), and his Engineering
Differential Equations class from Andover High School. Third from left is
8th grader David Field, age 14, perhaps our youngest Banquet attendee ever.
On the right are guest speaker, Dr. Bob Devaney, and local chapter President,
With local chapter President
Bob Tamarin are our co-winners of the Graduate Research Scholar of the Year
award, Subhalakshmi Nagarajan (Physics, left) and Berke Gur (Mechanical Engineering,
right). The awards, presented at the 5 May Graduate Student Association Banquet,
consist of a Research Assistantship, tuition, fees, and an award check, a
package worth over $33,000 each.
LaTorre Family Scholarship Winners
The LaTorre Family Scholarships are funded generously by
Don LaTorre, a 1960 Lowell Tech graduate in Textile Chemistry. Don is currently
the Chairman of the Sciences Advisory Board of the College of Arts and Sciences,
an alumni group that helps the Dean of Sciences develop resources for the
Sciences. From the left in the photo above are: Pulkit Chaudhury (Junior,
Biology); Helen Chim (Freshman, Biology); Graham Lilley (Junior, Biology);
Andrew Bawn (Sophomore, Math and Chemical Engineering) and local chapter President
Bob Tamarin. Also winning were Florian Limondin, Keith McElroy, and Robert
Kennedy Family Scholarship
The Kennedy Family Scholarships are supported from a generous
endowment donation by John Kennedy, a 1970 Mathematics graduate of Lowell Tech.
John is also a member of the Sciences Advisory Board of the College of Arts
and Sciences. Shown above with John (right in both photos) and local chapter
President Bob Tamarin (center in both photos) is Pulkit Chaudhury (Junior, Biology)
in the left photo and Daniel Haynes (Junior, Computer Science and Computer and
Electrical Engineering) in the right photo. Also winning were Florian Limondin
and Keith McElroy.
O'Connor Family Scholarship Winner
This was the inaugural year for the O'Connor Family Scholarship,
supported from a generous endowment donation by Tom O'Connor, 1977 B.S.
and 1980 M.S. Environmental Sciences graduate of the University of Lowell.
(In the past, we have been Lowell Tech, University of Lowell, and UMass
Lowell, among others) Tom is a founding Co-Chair of the College or Arts
and Sciences Advisory Board. Shown above with local chapter President, Bob
Tamarin, is the winner, Daniel Haynes, a Junior with a double major in both
Computer Science and Computer and Electrical Engineering.
High School Teacher of the Year
The UMass Lowell chapter initiated the High School Teacher of the Year Award
in 2004 to honor an outstanding high school science or math teacher, one responsible
for instilling in students an excitement about the sciences and technology.
Shown above (middle) is Ornella Bascuñan, a math teacher at Lowell High
School, our 2007 winner. Also pictured, from the left, are: Jeff Gaglione, Chair
of the Lowell High Math Department; Richard Coffey, past Chair of the Lowell
High Math Department; Art Mittler, local chapter Treasurer; Juan Bascuñan,
Ornella's husband; Ornella; Maria Vejar, House Master at Lowell High School; Cheryl Boss, Instructional Specialist at Lowell High School; Bob Devaney,
Guest Speaker; and Bob Tamarin, local chapter President. Our awardee has a Master
of Science in Mathematics from UMass Lowell and a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics,
Physics, and Education from the Universidad Catolica in Valparaiso, Chile. Ornella
has been a teacher of Mathematics at Lowell High School since 2001. Before that
she taught at the Robinson Middle School in Lowell and she also was an Adjunct
Faculty member at the University of Massachusetts Lowell where she taught College
Algebra and Differential Calculus. She has taught at Saint Clement's High School
in Medford and at the Instituto de Matematicas, Universidad Catolica de Valparaiso,
Chile and the Scuola Italiana, Valparaiso, Chile. She has cowritten the
5 - 8 Mathematics Curriculum Guide for the City of Lowell, has been involved
in the Mathematics Textbook Selection Committee, participated in the selection
of Mathematics textbooks for the Middle School, and for three years collaborated
with Dr. Regina Panasuk at UMass Lowell as a Lead Teacher in Curriculum Frameworks
Study Groups, Reading and Writing Across the Curriculum, and Developing Curriculum
Guides for Middle School. She currently teaches AP Calculus and Algebra.
of New Full
New full members of Sigma
Xi are shown above. From the left: Mr. Pastrick Bisson (graduate student,
Chemistry, Tufts University, and prior graduate of UMass Lowell), Dr. Jim
Whitten, Secretary of the local chapter, Dr. Jun Lee (Plastics Engineering),
Dr. Ming Wei (Plastics Engineering), Dr. Ravi Montenegro (Mathematics), and
local chapter President, Bob Tamarin.
Banquet Speaker this year was Dr. Bob Devaney, a Professor of Mathematics at
Boston University. He received his undergraduate degree from the College of
the Holy Cross in 1969 and his Ph.D. from the University of California at Berkeley
in 1973 under the direction of Fields Medal Winner, Stephen Smale. He taught
at Northwestern University and Tufts University before coming to Boston University
in 1980. His main area of research is dynamical systems. He is the author of
over one hundred research and pedagogical papers in the field of dynamical systems.
He is also the author, co-author, or editor of thirteen books in this area of
mathematics. Professor Devaney has delivered over 1,300 invited lectures on
dynamical systems and related topics in all 50 states in the US and in over
30 countries on six continents worldwide. He has also been the "Chaos Consultant"
for several theaters' presentations of Tom Stoppard's play Arcadia. And, in
2007, he was the mathematical consultant for the Kevin Spacey movie called Twenty
One, based on Ben Mezrich's best-seller, Bringing Down the House: The Inside
Story of Six M.I.T. Students Who Took Vegas for Millions. Dr. Devaney has received
numerous teaching awards, both locally and nationally, including the Deborah
and Franklin Tepper Haimo Award for Distinguished University Teaching at the
annual meeting of the Mathematical Association of America, the 1996 Boston University
Scholar/Teacher of the Year Award, and the 2002 National Science Foundation
Director's Award for Distinguished Teaching Scholars. His talk, interactive,
fascinating, and hugely entertaining, was entitled:
Games and Fractal Images
In the left photo, Dr. Devaney is shown interacting with one
of our Andover High School students, an 8th grader (David Field) who was first
with the answer to a question that stumped even the Math and Physics professors
in the audience. In the right photo, Dr. Devaney is shown with Ornella Bascuñan,
our 2007 High School Teacher of the Year.
thanks to our Secretary, Elizabeth Fortin, for making all the arrangements for
Check back in the fall
for information about the 2007-2008 awards competitions and the 2008 Banquet.
Return to Past Events