TNCC Faculty Members Accepted in Nationally Recognized Program for Mathematics Educators

Published: November 5, 2008

Two Thomas Nelson Community College faculty members have been accepted into the Mathematical Association of America’s (MAA) Section NExT program. Section NExT (New Experiences in Teaching) is a professional development program for new college and university faculty in the mathematical sciences.

As NExT fellows, Math Instructors Libby Arnesen and Matthew Watts will attend regional meetings over the next year in MAA’s Maryland-District of Columbia-Virginia (MD-DC-VA) section. The program will enable the two educators to explore key aspects of life in academia such as teaching effectively, reform pedagogy, and getting tenure all while building relationships with other participants including senior faculty mentors assigned to them from around the MD-DC-VA region, according to the MAA.

Additionally, they will be invited to participate in activities and sessions sponsored by Project NExT at the national MAA meetings.

“I feel honored … to represent not only TNCC but the [Virginia Community College System]. It is hoped that the exchange of ideas which takes place at the conferences will contribute to the academic community at large and further advance our instructional methods here,” said Watts, who joined the faculty in 2008 and has a bachelor’s degree from James Madison University and a master’s degree from the University of Arizona.

“As Section NExT fellows, we will be strongly connected with faculty … whose experience and expertise will lead to new developments in Mathematical research and education to be implemented right here in Hampton.  I cannot think of a more effective way to accelerate our abilities as beginning educators and bring fresh ideas to the College,” he added.

Arnesen, who joined the College in fall 2007, agreed. She has associate of science degree from Monroe Community College, a bachelor’s degree from SUNY-Geneseo and a master’s degree from SUNY-Potsdam-Watts.

“I hope to gain new ways to teach and approach Mathematical topics as well as consult with experienced faculty on the challenges that face Math instructors.  From the workshops I can broaden my Mathematical knowledge and learn how to use new technology in the classroom.  Overall the program will be a great support for me as a new instructor,” she said.

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