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Friday, May 6, 2016

Mother's Day

Happy Mother's Day!

Mothers are a child's best friend, number one supporters, and greatest confidants. To celebrate this special day, the Center would like to take a moment to commemorate some important mathematicians, who also happen to be mothers!

Mathematics + Motherhood: An Interview with Constance Leidy

Shifting focus to current women mathematicians, Scientific America reports on Mathematics+Motherhood. Lillian Pierces' series for the Association for Women in Mathematics focuses on women who are balancing motherhood with their mathematical careers.

Her interview with Constance Leidy, an Associate Professor of Mathematics at Wesleyan University, first appeared in the Association for Women in Mathematics (AWM) newsletter. Constance decided on a non-traditional route and had her daughter with a donor. 

: Could you briefly describe your mathematical field of interest and your current position?

CL: I am a low-dimensional topologist; recently I have been working in knot concordance. I am on the faculty of a liberal arts college that has a graduate program, and so both teaching and research are integral parts of my job, which I think is maybe a little bit rare.

LP: At the end of your leave, what was it like to move back to your normal working environment with a baby?

CL: Very different. I don’t know if it’s unique to being single but I’m having to learn how to just live my life, including do my job, in a totally new way. I have viewed this semester as purely a survival semester. I’m fortunate that my tenure vote happened in the fall while I was gone, so it took a lot of the pressure off of this spring semester. I have focused on doing the things that I have to do for my job but otherwise have been focused on being a mom more than anything else. Part of the reason I regarded this semester as a survival semester is that I thought this is a time I’m never going to get back with my daughter, it is a time to really cherish with her. A semester is quite short in an academic career, but the first year of my daughter’s life is quite important.

For the full interview click here!

Mother's Day Math!

Finally, check out today's special Mother's Day decoding problem!
Stumped? See the solution here:

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