The Annual UNCG Regional Mathematics and Statistics Conference

The 12th Annual UNCG RMSC, Friday and Saturday, November 11-12, 2016

Faculty Development Workshop on UR mentoring

Dr. Michael Dorff (Brigham Young University) and Dr. Kathryn Leonard (California State University-Channel Islands) will lead the Faculty development workshop covering the following topics:
  • benefits of UR (also covered by a student panel during the conference)
  • how to start with UR
  • how to find/choose research problems
  • how to find/recruit students
  • how to mentor students
  • how to solve/prevent problems during mentoring
  • how to find money to do UR
  • how to get involved in more activities related to UR


Michael Dorff is the department chair and professor of mathematics at Brigham Young University. He is the founder and a co-director of CURM, the Center for Undergraduate Research in Mathematics. Since 2007, this NSF-funded program has supported about 400 undergraduates and 120 faculty members at about 85 institutions nationally to do undergraduate research. He has directed 8 three-day summer faculty training workshops on mentoring undergraduates in research and has organized 6 conferences for undergraduate students to present their research. Also, he is a co-director of PIC Math which is an NSF-funded program to prepare students for industrial careers in the mathematical sciences through faculty training and students working on research problems from industry. In he 2016-17 academic year PIC Math will have about 750 undergraduate students participating at 70 different institutions. From 2012-2015 Michael was the director of the Mathematical Association of America�s RUMC program that provided support for about 35 regional undergraduate mathematics conferences annually. From 2011-2014 he was a member of the Executive Board of CUR, Council on Undergraduate Research. He has given over fifty presentations to faculty on successfully mentoring undergraduate students in research, has mentored over 50 undergraduate students in his own research, and is co-authoring a book on how to mentor undergraduate students in mathematics research.

Kathryn Leonard is an applied mathematician at California State University Channel Islands (CI) who has mentored over 40 undergraduate research students, more than half of whom are from underrepresented groups. Her funding to support research with undergraduates includes NSF REU Site and CAREER awards, and funding from the Keck Foundation. As director of the CI Center for Integrative Studies, she fosters interdisciplinary collaborations between faculty, students and local industry, and offers faculty development workshops on high impact practices including student research. She is co-director of the Center for Undergraduate Research in Mathematics, an NSF-funded program to develop academic year undergraduate research groups at colleges across the country, and serves in the Math and Computer Science Division of the Council on Undergraduate Research. She also serves on the Association for Women in Mathematics Executive Committee and has organized several research collaboration workshops for women, including undergraduates.