Document Type



Mathematics (Pomona)

Publication Date



mathematicians, education, Mathematicians in Mathematics Education, Institute of Mathematics Education


In Hollywood, some actors are regularly cast as mean, others as sweet and endearing, and some typically play innocent big-eyed youths who inevitably succeed after awakening to the particular facts of life that their producer wants them to awaken to. It is unusual and difficult for actors to cross the bridge between different types on a regular basis. However, there are always exceptions to the rule.

In the seemingly unrelated world of academics, mathematics faculty may find themselves playing different roles. People with different skills and interests strive to balance their careers in ways that will be uniquely fulfilling to them. Many choose to play multiple roles within their research fields and within the mathematical community. However, some typecasting naturally happens in our midst as well, and switching roles becomes difficult. Who knew mathematicians and Hollywood celebrities had anything in common?


First appeared in MAA FOCUS, newsmagazine of the Mathematical Association of America.

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© 2008 The Mathematical Association of America

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