Summer 2001 Newsletter

Faculty Update

Last year Duff Campbell (photo, right) joined the faculty in a tenure-track mathematics position. His Ph.D. is from Boston Univ. and he came to Hendrix from a position at West Point. His primary interest is number theory but students would tell you he is interested in everything. Duff is married to Beth Levi, a child advocate lawyer. Their daughter Eva is a very active two-year-old.

Chris Mouron (photo, left) joins us this year as Dwayne Collins' sabbatical replacement. Chris is a topologist with a Ph.D. from Texas Tech and most recently he taught at the University of Delaware. Chris and his wife Marisol have just moved to Conway.

Dwayne Collins will spend a sabbatical year working at Acxiom Corporation in Conway and Bob Eslinger is serving as Interim Vice President of Academic Affairs during the time it takes to replace President Ann Die. David Sutherland was recently elected as a national councillor of Pi Mu Epsilon.

This past summer we said goodbye to Lars Seme, '95, after several years of exemplary teaching in the department. He recently moved to Fort Smith where his wife Melissa is beginning a family practice residency. Lars will teach at West Arkansas Community College this fall.

We're In!

Last fall we moved back into a completely renovated Reynolds Hall. All the windows are back in the building. In the photo above you can see some of the east windows in Reynolds behind Bob Eslinger. In the photo below you can see what the front of the building looks like without the stairwells attached to the front of the old building.

The department space including seven faculty offices, two classrooms, two computer labs, a server room, a library, and a kitchen has all moved to the top floor. The offices have nice views of the pecan courtyard in front of the building.

The classrooms are equipped with video projection equipment and each desk has an internet connection and power source. The computer labs—one for beginning mathematics and computer science students and one for advanced computer science students—have new lab furniture which promotes group lab work and are open 24 hours.

The library at the top of the stairs has comfortable furniture for reading as well as tables and a blackboard.

Our physical surroundings are not the only changes in progress. As soon as we settled into the building last year we began planning the curriculum for the new semester calendar which begins Fall 2002.

Because the existing curriculum with a three-term calculus sequence and overlapping two-term upper level mathematics courses was designed for the term system, a complete overhaul was needed. Changes include a two-semester calculus sequence and a required discrete mathematics course. The curriculum is designed to prepare students to begin research projects after the sophomore year.

Summer Research at Acxiom

This summer Dwayne Collins and several students continued their research for Acxiom Corporation on binarization and subsequent OCRing of telephone book text images. Previous work had resulted in several approaches to binarizations of poor quality pages.

This summer's work focused on the final preparation of the images for OCRing, getting the best results possible from batch processing, and the parsing of the OCR record results into three or more fields.

While working on removing leaders (the line of periods separating the address and telephone numbers) the group was confronted with the problem of identifying what both local and global edges are in such text images. Previous work using wavelets has turned to curvelets and edgelets that handle "line" singularities far better than wavelets.

Seniors Tim McKuin and Elizabeth Fite, junior Jared Williams and sophomore Geri Headrick have worked on the project. Dwayne will continue this work during his sabbatical this year.

Alumni News

Carol Smith Schumacher, '82, gave the invited address at the 2001 Hendrix-Rhodes-Sewanee Symposium. Her talk entitled Surprises at Infinity: Self-Similarity and Self-Reference in Mathematics generated both excitement and many questions. Carol is a member of the mathematics department at Kenyon College.

Lee Minor, '65, recently contributed several boxes of advanced math- ematics books for our library. Lee is approaching retirement from the mathematics department at Western Carolina University.

2001 Seniors

From left to right this year's graduates are Ben Goodwin (math), Justin Hagemeier (cs), Anthony Nguyen (cs), Scott Bell (cs), Ben Andrews (math), Aaron Tolman (cs), D. D. Davis (math) and Sara Pennington (math). Not shown: Tim Hofer (math), Khiela Holmes (math/psych) and Adrienne Wells (math/biol).

Student Research

Hendrix mathematics and computer science students gave presentations at five national and regional conferences this year.

Rhodes Scholar (and senior) Ben Goodwin presented his paper on Cwatsets [] at the winter meeting of the Mathematical Association of American in New Orleans. Ben's work was done at last summer's NSF-REU program at Rose-Hulman Institute. Senior Ben Andrews and sophomore Dane Dormio gave presentations at the National Conference on Undergraduate Research in Lexington, Kentucky. Ben's talk was entitled “n-Person Duals where n>2” and Dane's talk was entitled “Analysis of the Subtangent.” They were joined by over forty other Hendrix students from other departments who made presentations of their research projects. Sophomore Jared Williams gave his presentation “Exploring Finite Time Blow-Up” at the national Pi Mu Epsilon meeting this summer in Madison, Wisconsin. Jared will spend fall term this coming year studying mathematics in Budapest.

These four students were joined by seniors Adrienne Wells, Aaron Tolman, Scott Bell, Anthony Nguyen and Tim Hofer at the Hendrix-Rhodes-Sewanee Symposium which was held in our new facilities this spring.

Adrienne spoke about her summer work in biology using mathematical wavelets in analyzing protein localization patterns and Tim presented his senior project on using Hough transforms to de-skew text images.

Computer Science students Aaron, Ben and Anthony presented their on-line interactive game which utilized their senior project work with distributed computing.

Finally, there were nine student presentations from Hendrix at this year's Oklahoma-Arkansas section meeting of the MAA.

Besides Tim Hofer, Dane Dormio, Jared Williams, Ben Andrews and Adrienne Wells, senior Sara Pennington, juniors Elizabeth Fite, Karla Harper, Dagim Tilahun and Tim McKuin gave presenations. Tim, Karla and Elizabeth reported on their Acxiom project with image processing while Sara Pennington presented her senior project on reversing numbers of acyclic digraphs. Dagim presented his work involving series and products of pi.

What's on our webpage?

  • Pi Mu Epsilon officers
  • List of ALL PME members
  • Course schedules
  • Research presentations details
  • Faculty contact information
  • Survey for updating alumni information

Ze'ev's Puzzle Corner

An isosceles triangle with lateral sides twice as long as its base is inscribed in a circle of radius one. Then another circle is inscribed in that triangle. Find (with explanation) the radius of the smaller circle. E-mail your solutions to Ze'ev by December 1 to have a chance at winning a Hendrix coffee mug.


Ze'ev Barel
Duff Campbell
Dwayne Collins
Bob Eslinger
Ali Kooshesh
Chris Mouron
David Sutherland