The Savage Teaching Award

Tyler Jarvis is the eighth recipient of the Savage Teaching Award for Distinguished Teaching of Mathematics. This award is presented every other year, usually in October. Nominees for the Savage Teaching Award are widely recognized as successful teachers who positively influence their students with effective teaching and who foster excitement about mathematics in and out of the classroom.

The Savage Teaching Award was established to honor the many dedicated teachers in the BYU Department of Mathematics. Past recipients of the award include Dr. Stephen Humphries, Kening Lu, Chris Grant, Rodney Forcade, Darrin Doud, Michael Dorff, and David Cardon. Additionally, Wayne Barrett, Peter Bates, James Cannon, Peter Crawley, Lawrence Fearnley, Kenneth Hillam, Kenneth Larson, Hal Moore, and Don Robinson have been specially recognized as award recipients.

Dr. Jarvis will be presented $1,000 and a bronze sculpture, “Wildfire,” by Helaman Ferguson, a former member of the BYU Department of Mathematics. The award presentation will take place on Thursday, October 3 at 4:00 pm in 1170 TMCB. Refreshments will be served at 3:30 pm in the lobby outside of 1170 TMCB. Faculty, graduate students, undergraduate students, and the BYU Community are invited to attend.

New Math Club for Women

A new math club is forming on BYU campus, and it has the words “women only” written all over it.


Students Amber Mosley and Jessica Doud noticed something was missing from their experiences as BYU math majors when they attended a Computer Science club meeting for women.  Taking matters into their own hands, the two ladies decided to start a club of their own.


“There aren’t a lot of math major women out there,” Jessica said. “We thought this would be a great way to let all of the female math majors get together and just get to know each other.”


Jessica and Amber spoke with Dr. Jessica Purcell about the idea.  “Many people are under the misconception that the only thing you can do with a major in math is to teach,” Dr. Purcell said.  “I think this club will help spread the word that there are actually a lot of other things you can do with a degree in mathematics.”


Club meetings will occur every other week at the same time and location.  Activities for the semester will include everything from games and food, to special lectures from women in math who have had to learn how to balance their careers with their family life.


The first official Women in Math club meeting will take place on Wednesday, February 6 from 5-6pm in 1170 TMCB.  Jessica and Amber hope all female math majors will attend, as well as any girls who have an interest in mathematics.  Pizza will be provided.  For more information, feel free to contact Amber Mosley at


FERPA Guidelines

A Winning Formula for Mentoring

Professor Michael Dorff of the Department of Mathematics will be announced as the recipient of the Lawrence K. Egbert Teaching and Learning Faculty Fellowship award at next year’s Annual University Conference.
The teaching and learning fellowship award, which has only existed for a few years, was created to recognize faculty members that have made a significant impact in the area of mentored learning.
Professor Dorff, who has been teaching at BYU for 12 years, was nominated and eventually selected as the recipient because of his extensive involvement in mentoring undergraduate students and helping other professors explore similar mentoring opportunities.
As part of Professor Dorff’s efforts to improve undergraduate research, he received a $1.26 million NSF grant in 2006 to create and direct the BYU sponsored “Center for Undergraduate Research in Mathematics,” (CURM). NSF has since renewed funding of the program with another $1.28 million grant to continue the successful project.
Dorff explains the purpose of this organization. “It is used to take the BYU model for mentoring and share it with professors and students at other institutions. CURM trains and offers financial support to these professors and students.”
Professor Dorff is very excited to continue working with students on a regular basis. Sometimes at a university, especially one the size of BYU, it’s difficult to maintain a close student-professor relationship. However, “when you are a mentor,” says Dorff, “you really get to know the students. You get to give help and guidance. You can offer career advice, spiritual advice and even sometimes you can help them with dating. You get to see them grow, and that’s really neat.”
The fellowship award will “provide some flexibility to do more things,” says Professor Dorff. “It’s nice to have funds to support undergraduate research and I’m very grateful to BYU.”
—Brian Shaw, College of Physical and Mathematical Sciences
—Photo credit to Mathematical Association of America

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