This week, in honor of Pi Day on March 14, we're presenting two stories from mathematicians.
Part 1: After a reluctant start, mathematician Ken Ono makes an unexpected discovery.
Part 2: Mathematician Piper Harron deals with harassment after standing up for diversity in math.
Ken Ono is the Asa Griggs Candler Professor of Mathematics at Emory University. He is the Vice President of the American Mathematical Society, and he considered to be an expert in the theory of integer partitions and modular forms. His contributions include several monographs and over 160 research and popular articles in number theory, combinatorics and algebra. He received his Ph.D. from UCLA and has received many awards for his research in number theory, including a Guggenheim Fellowship, a Packard Fellowship and a Sloan Fellowship. He was awarded a Presidential Early Career Award for Science and Engineering (PECASE) by Bill Clinton in 2000 and he was named the National Science Foundation’s Distinguished Teaching Scholar in 2005. He serves as Editor-in-Chief for two Springer-Nature journals and is an editor of Springer's The Ramanujan Journal. He was also an Associate Producer of the Hollywood film The Man Who Knew Infinity which starred Jeremy Irons and Dev Patel.
Piper Harron received her PhD in mathematics from Princeton University in January 2016. More interestingly, she started in 2003, left in 2009, lectured at Northeastern for three semesters, then stopped working and had two children born in 2011 and 2014. Her PhD thesis received recognition for its humorous style and blunt social commentary (Spoiler: math culture is oppressive), and she has traveled to many institutions around the country and in Canada to talk about her experiences trying to survive other people's good intentions. She is currently a postdoc in the Department of Mathematics at the University of Hawaii at Manoa.
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