Letter from the Chair - 2017
It’s been a big year for the College of Science and Mathematics. You may have heard that Bill (Biochemistry, ’72) and Linda Frost recently made a historic gift of $110 million to the college. We’re very grateful to the Frosts for their generosity.
This gift will directly impact the Mathematics Department in a number of ways. It includes money for scholarships to attract the most academically talented high school students. Math students are eligible for these scholarships, which offer $20,000 a year for four years. Currently, there are four of these Frost Scholars in the department.
Summer research students will also benefit from the gift. You can read about the accomplishments of our summer research students in this newsletter.
This gift also includes the previously announced $20 million for the new Science and Agriculture Teaching and Research Complex, which will provide approximately 2,000 square feet of dedicated computational and collaboration space for student-faculty research in multiple disciplines, including mathematics. The building is scheduled to open in the 2021-22 academic year.
From what I’ve seen of preliminary design plans, this new building will be one of the most impressive on campus. Located across from the Baker Center in the open space between the English and Science North buildings, it will incorporate many of the latest innovations in architectural design.
The total cost for the science and mathematics facilities in the building is $25 million, and the college still needs to raise $2 million. In addition to providing needed funding, your donation to this building project will demonstrate to the Frosts that mathematics alumni are dedicated to Cal Poly. If you’re interested in supporting the building, you can read more information online, contact me, or contact the college.
We’re grateful for all the different ways our alumni give back to Cal Poly. In January, we were excited to host alumnus Don Gibson (Mathematics, ’80). As a student, Don competed as a Putnam Exam team member, was a member of Kappa Mu Epsilon, completed two internships with IBM, and was named Outstanding Graduating Senior for the School of Science and Mathematics. After graduating from Cal Poly, Don worked for Hewlett-Packard until his retirement in January 2011. At HP, Don worked in many capacities, which included conducting hundreds of interviews for technical positions. Don spoke to a packed room of math majors about his experience as a recruiter and passed on advice for students confronting job interviews for the first time. It was a pleasure to meet Don, as well as a wonderful experience for our students to connect with him and benefit from his expertise.
In closing, I’d like to once again thank those who have supported us through donations and gifts. We are grateful for the critical support you provide through your generosity. Your continued interest in helping the department meet its goals is very much appreciated by our students, faculty and staff.
Please keep in touch and let us know what you’ve been up to. If you’re on campus, we’d love to see you at the department office.