The Brigham Young University Department of Mathematics is excited to welcome Dr. Jared Whitehead as a new faculty member as of January 2014. Dr. Whitehead earned a BS in Mathematics from BYU and a PhD in Applied and Interdisciplinary Mathematics from the University of Michigan. As an undergraduate at BYU, Dr. Whitehead met his wife, Samantha. He was assigned to be her home teacher in their singles ward and the rest is history. The couple has one son and three daughters, from ages 18 months to 7 years, as well as one dog and two cats. Dr. Whitehead, a native of Mancos, Colorado, has lived in many places across the United States, including Nevada, Wyoming, Mississippi, Louisiana, Massachusetts, and Maryland. Dr. Whitehead’s hobbies include running and biking. He has completed one Olympic distance triathlon and plans to complete more.
“Math is a way of making sense and order of a very messy reality,” says Dr. Whitehead. He was attracted to math partly because he was told early on that “if [he] became an expert in mathematics, he would be able to do anything else that he wanted.” Dr. Whitehead encourages students to talk to their professors and get to the point where they are more concerned about what they’re learning than their grades. He is also a proponent of the ACME program.
As an undergraduate at BYU, Dr. Whitehead interned at both the National Security Agency and MIT’s Lincoln Laboratory. After his PhD, he served as a Postdoctoral Research Associate at Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico. His current research interests include the analysis and computation of partial differential equations related to geophysical fluid dynamics.
What brings Dr. Whitehead back to Provo? “I feel like BYU’s math department has the best atmosphere for encouraging and promoting research by undergraduates. Also, it was sort of like coming home for myself and my family,” he says. Dr. Whitehead’s favorite thing about BYU is the quality of students, who he believes to be mature and grateful for the opportunities that have been given to them to study at such a high caliber institution.
Dr. Whitehead will be teaching the following classes.
Undergraduate: Calculus, Linear Algebra (313), Differential Equations (334, 447), and some ACME courses.
Graduate: Numerical Methods (510,511), Partial Differential Equations (547, 647, 648), and Methods of Applied Mathematics (521, 522).