COLLEGE OF ARTS AND SCIENCES Department of Mathematics and Statistics

News About Our Graduates

Our graduates have worked hard and we want to share their success with you! If you would like to share your story, please contact us. We would love to hear from you!

Wail Alahmadi

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Wail Alahmadi ('23 PhD Math.) has accepted a position as an assistant professor at The Islamic University (Saudi Arabia). He was advised by Michael Tsatsomeros.

Samuel Brienen

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Samuel Brienen ('23 MS Math.) has been accepted into the PhD program in mathematics at the University of Idaho. He was advised by Daniel Reiss.

Jessica Dickson

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Jessica Dickson ('23 PhD Math.) has accepted a positon as an asssociate mathematician with Light & Wonder, Inc. She was advised by Matthew Hudelson.

Matthew Gaddis

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Matthew Gaddis ('23 PhD Math.) has accepted a position as a supply chain analyst and planner with Silvus Technologies. He was advised by V.S. Manoranjan.

Luke Hall

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Luke Hall ('23 MS Statistics) has accepted a position as a biostatistician in the Department of Biostatistics at Harvard University. He was advised by Nairanjana (Jan) Dasgupta and Sterling McPherson.

Indunil Hewage

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Indunil Hewage ('23 MS Math.) has been accepted into the PhD program in mathematics at WSU. He was advised by Elissa Schwartz.

Chris Kang

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Chris Kang ('23 PhD Math.) has accepted a postdoc position at the University of Calgary. He was advised by Nikos Voulgarakis.

Kostiantyn Lyman

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Kostiantyn Lyman ('23 MS Statistics) has been accepted into the PhD program in mathematics at WSU. He was advised by Yuan Wang.

Rachel Perrier

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Rachel Perrier ('23 PhD Math.) has accepted an assistant professor position with Franciscan University of Steubenville. She was advised by Matthew Hudelson.

Madison Neyland

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Madison Neyland ('23 BS Math.) received a WSU 2023 Top Ten Senior Award in Academics, as well as a College of Arts and Sciences Outstanding Senior Award. This fall, she will enter a one-year Master in Teaching (MIT) program in Secondary Education in Mathematics at WSU Spokane. Read more about Madison.

Pryiyanka Rao

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Priyanka Rao ('23 PhD Applied Math., '21 MS Statistics) is working full-time at Microsoft as a data scientist, a position she accepted in January 2023. She was advised by V.S. Manoranjan and Nairanjana Dasgupta.

Shivani Sawant

Shivani Sawant ('23 MS Statistics) will join the Symbiosis Center for Medical Image Analysis in Pune, India as a research assistant. Her work will mainly focus on statistical shape analysis used in human implants design. Shivani was advised by Yuan Wang.

Hongjin Zhang

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Hongjin Zhang ('23 PhD Statistical Science) has accepted a position as an applied scientist at Amazon. She was advised by Abhishek Kaul.

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Annie Lu
('22 BS Math.)

National Merit Scholar, Fulbright award recipient, and applied mathematics major Annie Lu has received the department's 2022 Knebelman Outstanding Senior Award. The award is presented each spring to the top outstanding senior majoring in mathematics. Read more about Annie here. In addition to graduating as an applied mathematics major, she will also graduate with a minor in physics and music. Not one to sit back, she has already completed 5 graduate level courses in mathematics and statistics, receiving an A in each of them. Her cumulative GPA is 3.98 with a 4.0 GPA in mathematics. She has been an exceptional undergraduate teaching assistant for Calculus I, and her students have had a high pass rate. She has accomplished all of this while holding a research assistant position and playing in the WSU Flute Choir and Wind Symphony. This fall she will join the Ph.D. Program in Mathematics at UCLA. She has been selected as a 2022 WSU Top Ten Senior in Academics, and a 2022 College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) Outstanding Senior for Mathematics and Statistics.

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Adebowale (Adebo) Sijuwade
('21 PhD Math., '21 MS Statistics)

Adebo Sijuwade has accepted a position with the Energy Information Administration under the Department of Energy as a mathematical statistician. The position will allow him to work remotely from any location. His dissertation title is "Fractional Integral Operators" which serves as an extension of classical harmonic analysis and Calderon-Zygmund theory. His PhD advisor was Charles Moore and his master’s advisor was Nairanjana (Jan) Dasgupta.

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Enrique Alvarado
('21 PhD Math.)

Enrique Alvarado has completed his doctoral degree in mathematics and will join the Department of Mathematics at University of California, Davis as a Krener Assistant Professor where he will continue his research program in pure and applied aspects of geometric analysis, topology, and chemistry. Enrique was jointly advised by Kevin Vixie and Bala Krishnamoorthy. Enrique also worked closely during the last 2.5 years of his Ph.D. program with Aurora Clark in the WSU Department of Chemistry.

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Elizabeth Amona
('21 MS Statistics)

Elizabeth Amona has completed her master's degree in statistics. She will join the Ph.D. program at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Virginia, this fall. She was advised by Elissa Schwartz and Yuan Wang.

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Jordan (Miller) Broussard
('21 PhD Math.)

Jordan (Miller) Broussard has completed her doctoral degree in mathematics and has accepted an assistant professor of mathematics position at Whitworth University in Spokane, Washington, starting fall semester 2021. She was advised by Matt Hudelson.

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Joel Corser
('21 MS Math.)

Joel Corser has completed his masters's degree in mathematics and has accepted a position as a computing research scientist at the Naval Nuclear Laboratory in Niskayuna, New York. He was advised by Lynn Schreyer.

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Jordan Culp
('21 PhD Math.)

Jordan Michael Culp accepted a post-doctoral position in the Nicola Computational Neuroscience Lab in the Department of Cell Biology and Anatomy at the University of Calgary, funded by the Pacific Institute of the Mathematical Sciences. He researches novel techniques for analyzing inherent dynamics in the neural data from the McGirr lab at the University of Calgary. This involves many big data problems, so Jordan's current research involves first applying a variety of mathematical and statistical methodologies to decompose, approximate, and cluster the data in lower dimensional space before standard analytical approaches can be applied. When not working on post-doctoral research, Jordan likes to scour local record shops for new vinyl records to add to his collection as well as scour local pizza shops for his new favorite slice. He also likes to frequent Banff National Park for a good day-hike. After completion of this post-doctoral appointment in 2023, he would like to pursue a tenure track academic position at a university in the United States or Canada. He was advised by Xueying (Snow) Wang. Updated 06/2022

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Debasmita Das
('21 PhD Statistics)

Debasmita (Deb) Das has completed her doctoral degree in statistics. She has accepted a research scientist position with the NIH funded Baptist Memorial Healthcare Center in Memphis, Tennessee. She will be working on analytical projects as they relate to the work of thoracic oncology research, which will include technical writing and structured analytics work for project abstracts, manuscripts, and grants. She was advised by Nairanjana "Jan" Dasgupta.
1/2022 update: Deb has accepted a position as a senior scientist biostatistician with Merck in Rahway, New Jersey.

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Nicole Griggs
('21 MS Math.)

Nicole Griggs has completed her master's degree in mathematics. She has been accepted into the Mathematics and Science Education doctoral program at WSU. She was advised by Kimberly Vincent.

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Prashant Gupta
('21 PhD Math.)

Prashant Gupta ( has completed his doctoral degree in mathematics and will be joining Natural Intelligence Systems ( in Boise, ID, as a research scientist. He will be working on theoretical and computational aspects of neuromorphic computing, AI, and machine learning. He was advised by Bala Krishnamoorthy.

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Alexander Kappes
('21 MS Statistics, '21 PhD Econ.)

Alexander Kappes has completed his master's degree in statistics, and doctoral degree in economics. He has accepted a position as a post-doctoral researcher with the Global Health Group at Washington State University. He was advised in statistics by Nairanjana "Jan" Dasgupta.

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Ashutosh Kumar
('21 MS Statistics, '21 PhD Econ.)

Ashutosh Kumar has completed his master's degree in statistics and doctoral degree in economics. He has acceped a position with the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta, Georgia, as a Prevention Effectiveness Fellow/Health Economist. He was advised by Nairanjana "Jan" Dasgupta.

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Silvia Madrid
('21 PhD Math.)

Silvia Madrid has completed her Ph.D. in mathematics and has accepted a visiting professor position with Carroll College in Helena, Montana. She was advised by Sandy Cooper.

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Henry Ogu
('21 MS Applied Math.)

Henry Ogu has completed his master's degree in applied mathematics. He will join the Ph.D. program at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Virginia this fall. He was advised by Elissa Schwartz.

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Damilola Olabode
('21 PhD Applied Math., '20 MS Statistics)

Damilola Olabode has completed her doctoral degree in applied mathematics. She completed a master's degree in statistics in 2020. She will join the clinical pharmacology and quantitative pharmacology group at AstraZeneca in February 2021, as a clinical pharmacometrician in research. She was advised by Xueying (Snow) Wang.

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Jemin Shim
('21 PhD Math.)

Jemin Shim has completed his doctoral degree in mathematics and has accepted a visiting assistant professor position with the Department of Mathematics at the University of Lousiana, starting fall semester 2021. He was advised by Sheng-Chi Liu.

Kellan Toman
('21 PhD Math.)

Kellan Toman completed his doctoral degree in mathematics and has accepted a data scientist position with Microsoft in Redmond, Washington. While completing his doctoral degree this past year he also worked as a WSU research consultant. He was advised by Nikos Voulgarakis.

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Alta Tumurbaatar
('21 PhD Math.)

Alta Tumurbaatar earned her doctoral degree in mathematics and is a post-doctoral researcher with Emory University's Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing in Atlanta, Georgia. She works on nursing quality indicator projects to detect pressure injury using EHR data, temporal network analysis, and machine learning models. Her research focuses are algebraic graph algorithms, machine learning, deep learning, computational topology, and their applications in biomedical and health science. She was advised by Kevin Vixie.
Updated 01/2023

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Modhurima Amin
('20 MS Statistics, '20 PhD Econ.)

Graduate student Modhurima Amin has completed her master's degree in statistics and her Ph.D. in economics, spring 2020. She has accepted a tenure-track assistant professor of applied econometrics, statistics and data science position in the Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas. Her research interests are centered on change points detection in high dimensional models, applied econometrics, and machine learning with a focus on agriculture. She was advised by Abhishek Kaul and Nairanjana "Jan" Dasgupta of our department, and Jill J. McCluskey in economics.

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Saleh Aseeri
('20 MS Math.)

Graduate student Saleh Aseeri has completed his master's degree in mathematics, spring semester 2020. He has returned to his country of origin for a short time and will be returning to WSU in the fall. He has been accepted into the department's doctoral program in mathematics. He was advised by Tom Asaki.

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Syed Badruddoza
('20 MS Statistics)

Graduate student Syed Badruddoza has accepted an assistant research professor position in agricultural economics at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas, starting September 2020. His current research looks into the classification of sparse and irregular samples, and retail market analysis with big data. He concurrently completed a master's degree in statistics and a Ph.D. in economics at WSU. He was advised by Yuan Wang and Nairanjana "Jan" Dasgupta.

Ralph Chikhany
('20 PhD Math. Ed.)

Graduate student Ralph Chikhany has accepted a position as clinical assistant professor at the NYU Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences, in the Washington Square campus in Manhattan, New York. He completed his Ph.D., spring 2020. His responsibilities will include teaching and coordinating entry level courses through multivariable calculus and linear algebra, training and evaluating new instructors and teaching assistants, and curriculum development and assessment. He plans to continue his ongoing research on the teaching and learning of business mathematics and calculus. Ralph is a former president of the WSU Graduate and Professional Student Association (GPSA). He received a 2020 College of Arts and Sciences "Excellence in Teaching by a Graduate Student Award." He was advised by Will Hall.

Zachary Hilliard
('20 PhD Math.)

Zachary Hilliard spent two years teaching mathematics at a private school in Virginia after earning his doctoral degree, and while there he also coached volleyball and continued his pen and ink drawing hobby. In July 2022, he accepted a postdoctoral scholar position in the Mathematics Department at Oregon State University in Corvallis, Oregon. His research has two parallel tracks; one on phase transition (variants of the Stefan problem) and the other on estimating macro-scale properties (permeability) from fluid simulations at the pore-scale. He taught advanced calculus 1 (undergrad real analysis) last quarter, and is teaching it again, along with an introductory class on numerical analysis. He also runs a reading group for undergraduates as an introduction to functional analysis. He was advised by Lynn Schreyer.
Updated 01/2023

Rachel (Rui) Huang
('20 PhD Applied Math., '15 MS Computational Finance)

Graduate student Rachel (Rui) Huang has completed a Ph.D. in applied mathematics as well as an M.S. in computational finance (2015). She is employed by GreenSky, a financial technology company based in Atlanta, Georgia, as a data scientist. GreenSky provides technology to banks and merchants to make loans to consumers for home improvements, solar heat and other purposes. She plans to stay in the data scientist field and study for the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) exam. She would like to remain in the finance industry performing credit strategy related work at the management level. She was advised by Haijun Li.

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Matthew Jobrack
('20 PhD Math.)

Graduate student Matthew Jobrack has accepted a tenure-track assistant professor position in mathematics at Ramapo College of New Jersey in Mahwah, New Jersey, starting September 2020. In this position he will be teaching and developing undergraduate courses in mathematics and statistics, as well as undergraduate and graduate courses in data science. He will also continue to pursue his research interests in both number theory and statistics, and will supervise undergraduate and master's research projects in these and other areas. He was advised by Sheng-Chi Liu for his Ph.D. While working on this he also completed a master's degree in statistics and was advised by Marc Evans.

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Yingzi Li
('20 PhD Statistics)

Graduate student Yingzi Li has completed her Ph.D. in statistics. She has accepted a position as a data scientist with Bayer Crop Science in St. Louis, Missouri. She was advised by Nairanjana "Jan" Dasgupta.

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Jeffrey Preston
('20 MS Statistics)

Graduate student Jeffrey Preston received his master's degree in statistics, spring 2020. He will be moving to Washington D.C. where he has accepted a job working for the federal government. He was advised by Jave Pascual.

Mostafa Rezapour
('20 PhD Math., '19 MS Statistics)

Mostafa has recently joined the Center for Biomedical Informatics as a research fellow at Wake Forest University School of Medicine. Prior to this he was a postdoc (2020-2022) in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics at Wake Forest University, where he also led the Machine Learning Group in the 2021 - 2022 academic year. As a postdoc he served on the graduate committee and taught calculus series, linear algebra, optimization, and differential equations. He also mentored the National Math Alliance for Doctoral Studies in Mathematical Science. The Wake Forest University School of Medicine's Center for Biomedical Informatics is developing image analysis systems for computer-assisted analysis and interpretation of medical images to help medical professionals (e.g. pathologists, radiologists). The goal is to develop computational tools to extract quantitative features useful for more objective and accurate detection, diagnosis, and prognosis. As a research fellow, he is very interested in and passionate about machine learning, deep learning, advanced linear algebra, tensor analysis, computational mathematics and optimization to help the Clinical Image Analysis Lab achieve its goals. At WSU, Mostafa passed the department's Graduate Qualifying Exam (GQE) with the highest score of all graduates. He received a Sidney G. Hacker Graduate Mathematics Scholarship, and a Craft Scholarship from the College of Arts and Sciences. In Iran, he ranked eight of more than 20,000 students taking the Master of Science in Applied Mathematics Exam, and number nine out of more than 20,000 students taking the Master of Science in Theoretical (Pure) Mathematics Exam. Mostafa earned a doctoral degree in applied mathematics under Professor Tom Asaki, and a master's degree in statistics under Professor Nairanjana (Jan) Dasgupta.
Updated 01/2023

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Konstantinos (Kostas) Tsampourakis
('20 PhD Math.)

Graduate student Konstantinos (Kostas) Tsampourakis has completed his master's degree in mathematics, spring 2020, and has been accepted into the Ph.D. Program in Statistics at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland, where he will be doing research in algorithms for statistical analysis. The University of Edinburgh is ranked 20th in the world by the 2020 QS World University Rankings. It is ranked as the 6th best university in Europe by the U.S. News' Best Global Universities Ranking, and 7th best in Europe by the Times Higher Education Ranking. He was advised by Abhishek Kaul.

Megan Wendler
('20 PhD Math.)

Graduate student Megan Wendler has accepted a tenure-track assistant professor position in mathematics at Colorado Mesa University in Grand Junction, Colorado, starting August 2020. Megan completed her Ph.D. in mathematics in spring 2020. She will be teaching courses (the majority of which will be applied mathematics courses) and supervising undergraduate research projects. She was advised by Michael Tsatsomeros.

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Yueqiao (Faith) Zhang
('20 PhD Math.)

Graduate student Yueqiao (Faith) Zhang has completed her doctoral degree in mathematics, spring 2020, and has accepted a 3-year visiting assistant professor position with the Department of Mathematics and Statistics at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. She was advised by Michael Tsatsomeros. While completing the Ph.D. in mathematics, she concurrently completed a master's degree in statistics. The advisor for her master's degree was Xiongzhi Chen.

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Yufeng Cao
('19 PhD Math.)

Yufeng Cao is a research associate in the Radiation Oncology Department at the University of Maryland, where he is applying mathematics to the field of radiation oncology. He is using data analysis to help with medical imaging and clinical parameters. Recently the team he is working with developed a deep learning model that mimics a physician's prescription dosing behavior in radiosurgery of brain metastases using a three-path three-dimensional convolutional neural network. This modeling can improve the efficiency and accuracy of clinical practice or serve as a surrogate to provide initial consultations to patients seeking secondary opinions. An article on this, AI-assisted clinical decision making (CDM) for dose prescription in radiosurgery of brain metastases using three-path three-dimensional CNN, was recently published in Science Direct. Yufeng was advised by Kevin Vixie.
Updated 01/2023

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Jillian Glassett
('19 PhD Math.)

Jillian Glassett is currently employed by Emsi Burning Glass (formerly known as Emsi) in Moscow, Idaho as the Data Product Analyst for Job Postings and Profiles. Emsi Burning Glass is a labor market analytics company, providing data reports and visualizations for higher education, companies, small governments, and more to get insight into the labor market. They provide government-based data as well as scrapped job postings and profiles. Jillian plans to continue working as a data analyst, building up her technical skills along the way. She was advised by Judi McDonald.

photo of Henry Riely with his wife and two young children

Henry Riely
('19 PhD Math.)

Henry Riely is a math lecturer in the Mathematics Department at Kennesaw State University in Georgia. Although a pure mathematician, he will be pursuing a master's degree in computer science in the near future at Georgia Tech. He lives with his wife and two sons in Acworth, Georgia and in his spare time he likes to play guitar and piano, and study machine learning. He was advised by Charles Moore.
Updated 2/2022

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Ryan Lattanzi
('19 MS Math.)

"I had no idea where a master's degree would take me, and it was the best thing that could have happened to me. What I have found to be vital is continuous learning both by myself and by seeking out solid mentor relationships. After graduating from WSU, I worked with Kevin Vixie for about 6 months on a really cool financial tech problem where I learned so much, in particular coding. From there, I went to Tampa, Florida, to work as a data scientist for the government. I realized that the power of data science was backed by data engineering, which is closer to software engineering than mathematics. Since I found that my passion for coding and software engineering was growing, I switched roles to become a data engineer. I have learned so many cool things and have been hired by the Detroit Lions. I thank WSU for the amazing program and people that catapulted me into industry and set me up for success!"
Updated 1/2022

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Vlad Oles
('19 PhD Math.)

After starting his postdoc at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oakridege, TN, Vlad works primarily with data analytics, including the analysis on networks. In his spare time he tries to develop and continue his research about the Gromov-Hausdorff distances. Vlad moved to Knoxville, TN in August and enjoys the opportunity to wear summer shorts in the wintertime. He misses Pullman immensely. His doctoral advisor was Professor Alex Panchenko.
Updated 1/2022

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James Whitbread
('18 BS Theoretical Math.)

Mathematics senior James Whitbread is the recipient of a WSU 2018 Top Ten Senior Award for Academics and the 2018 Knebelman Outstanding Senior in Mathematics Award. He graduates with a degree in theoretical math with minors' in biology, chemistry, and molecular biosciences, with a cumulative gpa of 3.993. Scoring in the 98th percentile of the medical college admissions test (MCAT), he will attend Johns Hopkins University Medical School in the fall of 2018 to become a cardiac-thoracic surgeon. Read more about mathematics major James Whitbread. Read about his work to help raise mential health awareness on the WSU campus.

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Mikhail Gongadze
('18 MS Statistics)

Mikhail Gongadze received his master's degree in statistics under the supervision of Dr. Jave Pascual. He moved to Warsaw, Indiana where he accepted an offer from Zimmer Biomet and currently works as a senior business intelligence analyst. As part of Mikhail's work he supports global compliance monitoring and company finance departments by creating machine learning scripts and workflows to identify fraud or odd financial activities within the company's general ledger. He also works with data discrepancies and anti-corruption monitoring. To accomplish this he works with KNIME, an analytics platform, codes in Python, and creates SQL queries in SAP. Mikhail's future plans include earning an MBA and moving toward data analytics management.
Updated 11/2020 

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Yunfeng Hu
('18 PhD Math.)

Yunfeng Hu is working as a research scientist at Amazon Web Services (AWS) World Wide Revenue Organization (WWRO). His job mainly focuses on customer churn and recommendation systems, and he is currently working from home in Kirkland, Washington. He joined AWS in January 2020, after working as a data scientist at EMSI in Moscow, Idaho. He was advised by Kevin Vixie and Bala Krishnamoorthy.
Updated 2/2022

image of Cameron Sweet

Cameron Sweet
('18 PhD Math., '16 MS Statistics)

Cameron Sweet is a tenure-track assistant professor of mathematics at Saint Martin’s University, a small, private, faith-based, minority serving institution in Lacey, Washington. He teaches courses in statistics, calculus, linear algebra, and the university’s core ethics curriculum, while also advising students in mathematics education and conducting research on teaching and learning with representations. In the summer of 2019, he traveled to Langfang, China to teach calculus courses at Saint Martin’s sister school, North China Institute of Aerospace Engineering, and returned to the program online the following two summers. He facilitates discipleship of Jesus’ teachings through bible study, community service, and outdoor recreation. Living at the base of the Puget Sound has provided ready access to the Olympic and Cascade Mountains for him to continue running, climbing, hiking, biking, and swimming in the Pacific Northwest. He was advised by Libby Knott for his doctoral degree and Nairanjana (Jan) Dasgupta for his master's degree.
Updated 1/2022 

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Patrick Torres
('18 PhD Math.)

Patrick Torres is employed at Carroll College in Helena, Montana on a one-year instructor position teaching single and multivariable calculus as well as calculus-based probability and statistics. The mathematics department at Carroll is known for its mathematical modeling-oriented program and unique "active learning" teaching approach which has been supported by numerous grants from the National Science Foundation. Patrick is slowly modifying his teaching style from lecturing to a more hands-on approach of having students solve problems on a board in class and utilizing software such as MATLAB and R in their labs to increase learning and student engagement. He recently met up with Dr. Lynn Schreyer when she took WSU students to the Math Modeling Challenge at Carroll College in the fall of 2018 and said, "I miss the enthusiasm of the WSU math department faculty and staff, and the camaraderie of my former fellow graduate students, but I like the small classes here and the support I am receiving. Helena is such a beautiful place to live that I’m applying for a permanent position with Carroll College." While teaching keeps him busy, he still plans to continue his research in matrix theory and explore other areas such as partial differential equations and topology.
Updated 1/2019 

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Osama Fakron
('17 MS Math.)

Osama Fakron has accepted a position as an assistant professor and program advisor for engineering technology in the School of Engineering Math & Technology, at Navajo Technical University. Before that, he worked as a mathematics instructor at Virginia Tech. He earned both a PhD in mechanical engineering and a master's degree in applied mathematics from WSU after receiving a master's degree in mechanical engineering and working as a lecturer in the Mechanical Engineering Department at the University of Benghazi. He has extensive experience with material characterization techniques including scanning electron microscopy, x-ray diffraction, transmission electron microscopy, and nanoindentation. His primary research interest is in the area of 3D image reconstruction and he uses mathematical formulas to describe experiment details. He was advised by Tom Asaki.
Updated 01/2023 

image of Abigail (Abby) Higgins

Abigail (Abby) Higgins
('17 PhD Math. Ed.)

Abby Higgins is in her first year as a tenure-track assistant professor at California State University, Sacramento. The university enrolls over 30,000 students and is one of the most diverse universities west of the Mississippi River. Although still in the first semester of her new position she has found several future research collaborators on campus, and feels fortunate that the university supports early-career faculty in establishing a research program. She says the department is committed to exceptional teaching, the students are incredibly hard-working and kind, and she is proud to be affiliated with an institution committed to providing resources to support all students as they navigate their education. She says that being located in the capital city of the largest state by population also brings unique opportunities. "Through my proximity to the California State Legislature, I hope to be involved in educational policy-making in the future. Sacramento is a fun, happening city and I have really enjoyed exploring it and the surrounding area. There are lot of artsy things going on in the city and a seemingly-infinite amount of hiking and outdoor exploration here."
Updated 1/2019

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Ian Lundholm
('17 PhD Math. Ed.)

Ian Lundholm is an assistant professor of mathematics at Milligan College near Johnson City, Tennessee. He teaches a wide variety of courses including a developmental math sequence, math for elementary teachers, the calculus sequence, linear algebra, and modern algebra. His current research efforts involve redesigning developmental math courses using the emporium model and utilizing emerging technologies that aid math education. He and his wife Kristy, have two children ages 5 and 3.
Updated 1/2019

image of Hossein Noorazar

Hossein Noorazar
('17 PhD Math.)

Hossein Noorazar is working with Professor Kirti Rajagopalan in the WSU Biological Systems Engineering department as a postdoc research associate using remote sensing. He uses satellite images to study farmers' practices. In particular, he looks at whether a field is double-cropped. Double-cropping is important for food production yet uses more water that might be scarce in some regions. He is interested in using statistical learning techniques to explore data and image analysis, which can have a variety of applications such as detecting anomalies of cancer in the body, fractures in wind turbines, rust on metal structures, increasing the quality of cell phone images, or deleting an unwanted object from an image. In his spare time he enjoys cooking and experimenting with new food recipes, landscape photography, and pottery. Hossein was advised by Kevin Vixie and Matthew Sottile.
Updated 01/2023

image of Thomas Cameron

Thomas Cameron
('16 PhD Math.)

Thomas Cameron is an assistant professor of mathematics, in year 2 of a tenure track position at Penn State Behrend. During the summer 2022 he will be visiting the University of Sorbonne to work with Stef Graillat on the use of compensated arithmetic to perform high precision computations without the use of a higher-precision floating-point format. In his free time he enjoys playing hockey with his son who is now 6, riding horses with his daughter who is now 3, and going backpacking with his wife Katie.

He teaches courses on topics from discrete structures, linear algebra, and real and complex analysis. His research is at the intersection of numerical analysis and linear algebra. His work on polynomial root solvers has been published in the Numerical Algorithms journal from Springer.
Updated 4/2022

image of Mohammed Kaabar

Mohammed Kaabar
('16 MS Math., '14 BS Math.)

Mohammed Kaabar lives in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, after international trips to Canada, Malaysia, Singapore, and Indonesia to gain diverse teaching and research experiences. He serves as an associate editor for the Bulletin of Electrical Engineering and Informatics (BEEI) and IAES International Journal of Robotics and Automation. He is a member of the expert editorial advisory board for the Big Data and Advanced Wireless Technologies Springer Book Series, as well as an appointed member of the mathematics editorial board of the Multimedia Educational Resource for Learning and Online Teaching (MERLOT II) program at California State University, Long Beach. Additionally, he is an approved member of the Science and Democracy Network (SDN), a part of the Science, Technology, & Society Program at Harvard Kennedy School, which is an international network of scholars with the main goal to promote social studies of science and technology, and to prospect democratic processes in the development, approach and use of science and technology. He collaborates with researchers from Spain, Mexico, and Argentina to work on interesting research projects in the field of Fractional Calculus with Applications to Natural Science and Engineering. He has been an invited referee for more than 100 international STEM conferences and journals (Indexed by Scopus/ISI/Web of Science). His Publons verified record may be found here:, and is listed in the top 1% of all computer science reviewers worldwide from 2019 to 2020. His published article on EVMO News was created to help math teachers and professors overcome the challenges of online teaching and learning during COVID-19 and may be found at He was advised by Mark Schumaker.
Updated 4/2020

image of Peter Klosterman

Peter Klosterman
('16 PhD Math. Ed.)

Peter Klosterman is currently in his second year as an assistant professor at Central Washington University (CWU) where he teaches future teachers, as well as general mathematics courses. This year he became the program director for the CWU Middle-Level Mathematics Teaching Program. Peter is married to Esther, who received her masters degree in mathematics from the University of Idaho in 2014 and subsequently instructed in the WSU Math Department. They now have three daughters ages 4, 2, and 4 months. Peter and Esther are delighted to be raising their children close to family in the scenic beauty of the Pacific Northwest.
Updated 1/2019

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Stan Swierczek
('16 MS Math.)

Stan Swierczek defended his doctoral degree in applied mathematics at the University of Arizona in July of 2021. His graduate research concerned regional biogeochemical ocean modeling in the Southern Ocean. He also received a master's degree in applied mathematics from the University of Arizona in 2018. He worked as a postdoctoral fellow at the Naval Research Laboratory in Stennis Space Center, Mississippi before taking a position in spring 2022 as an associate model risk analyst for M&T Bank. Although M&T Bank is located in Buffalo, New York, Stan's position allows him to live anywhere and work remotely. His graduate adviser was Professor Alex Panchenko.
Updated 3/2022

image of Candace Chappelle

Candace Chappelle
('15 MS Math. Ed.)

Candace Chappelle is  currently  pursing a Ph.D. in Mathematics and Science Education from the WSU College of Education.  She has served on the Graduate and Professional Students Association (GPSA) for 2.5 years advocating and speaking on behalf of graduate students to Washington State representatives and senators.  She is a current co-chair of the Executive Policy 15 Work Group for five working groups that are creating a more inclusive and welcoming community at WSU campuses system-wide.  Candace advocates for graduate students rights and will continue to do so upon completion of her doctorate degree.
Updated 1/2019

Jared Aurentz
('14 PhD Math.)

Jared Aurentz has accepted a post-doctoral position with Professor L. N. Trefethen FRS who is the head of Oxford's Numerical Analysis Group. Professor Trefethen received his Ph.D. from Stanford and has held positions at MIT and Cornell. His research interests include numerical linear algebra and approximation theory. Currently his group at Oxford is developing a software package called Chebfun, which is a collection of MATLAB subroutines for manipulating continuous functions with vector-like speed. Jared's official job title is "Research Associate in Algorithms Related to Chebfun" and he will extend the functionality of this first-of-its-kind software suite. He says, "I am very grateful to have been offered this position and wish to thank the WSU Math Department and my advisor Professor David Watkins for all that they've done. I most certainly could not have made it this far without their help and support."

See March 2018 SIAM news about Jared Aurentz and his advisor David Watkins, who received an Outstanding Paper Prize.

Update 2/22: Jared Aurentz met a lovely young Spanish woman while working in Oxford and left his postdoc position early to move with her to Madrid. They were married in 2017 and are happily expecting their second child any day now. He has a tenure-track position with the University of Huelva in the south of Spain, and is now advising graduate students of his own, which "makes me think back to those 4 wonderful years I spent at WSU."

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Heather Moon
('13 PhD Math.)

Heather Moon accepted a position at St. Mary's College of Maryland after graduating yet, missing the Pacific Northwest, she returned to the area by accepting a position as an assistant professor at Lewis-Clark State College. She received tenure there, became chair of the The Division of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, and resigned to pursue a doctoral degree in physics at WSU. She is currently beginning her PhD research in Shock Physics and expects to graduate in 2025. Springer has recently published her textbook Application-Inspired Linear Algebra with co-authors Tom Asaki (WSU) and Marie Snipes (Kenyon College). The book's goal is to inspire mathematics using applications, which means it begins with applications and leads students through the same processes that mathematicians use in their research to develop linear algebra tools. This deviates markedly from the more standard definition-theorem-pedagogical examples-applications path and allows students to understand the need of a tool or technique, how to use it, and gain a deeper understanding - before seeing its definition or knowing what a tool is called. Her future goal is to work at a national lab where her skills in mathematics and physics can be used to make a difference in the world. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time in the wilderness, working with batik in her basement, and teaching batik classes. She was advised by Tom Asaki.
Updated 01/2023

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Pietro Paparella
('13 PhD Math., '03 MS Math.)

Pietro Paparella is an associate professor of mathematics (2020–present) in the Division of Engineering and Mathematics at the University of Washington Bothell ("UWB"). From 2013–2015, he was a visiting assistant professor of mathematics in the department of mathematics at the College of William and Mary ("WM"). He held the position of assistant professor of mathematics at UWB from 2015–2020. His research interests include combinatorial matrix theory; the geometry of polynomials; matrix analysis; and nonnegative matrix theory. He has worked extensively on the nonnegative inverse eigenvalue problem with frequent collaborator Charles R. Johnson (WM). His Erdős number is 3 (Erdős & Cameron, Cameron & Johnson, Johnson & Paparella). He was advised by Judith J. McDonald and Michael Tsatsomeros.
Updated 02/2022

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Rhonda Crate
('12 MS Statistics)

Rhonda Crate is a senior data scientist/platform developer within Boeing's Analytics and Information Management organization. As part of her work, she spends time investigating and testing new technologies related to analytics and makes recommendations to the enterprise platform. She helps organizations within the company use the platform and deploy projects. She also works on a variety of data science projects in Boeing's IT, commercial and defense programs. For these projects, she uses approaches ranging from text to regression to machine learning. She teaches R programming to other employees and is the Boeing Designated Expert for R technologies. Prior to working at Boeing, she worked as a data analyst in a small marketing company in Seattle called Catalysis. While there she worked on projects such as optimizing web browsing behavior for Microsoft Store, product placement for Seattle Central Co-Op, and segmentation analysis for GCI Alaska Telecom. She has a 5 year old daughter Elsie with her husband Andrey (another fellow Coug), who is also a data scientist at Boeing.
Updated 1/2019

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Baha Alzalg
('11 PhD Math.)

After graduation Baha Alzalg worked as a postdoctoral research fellow on a dynamic optimization research project in the Computer Engineering Department at the University of California Davis, and then as a visiting assistant professor of optimization in the Department of Mathematical and Statistical Sciences at the University of Colorado Denver. In 2013 he joined the University of Jordan's Department of Mathematics as an assistant professor and was tenured and promoted to associate professor in 2016. Upon this promotion he was selected to be head of the department. "This has been the greatest experience and the finest skills of my professional life so far. The department is the only Ph.D. granting mathematics department in Jordan and contains 37 full-time faculty members, of which 17 are full professors." His research papers have been published in journals such as the Journal of Optimization Theory and Applications (JOTA), Computational Optimization and Applications, Optimization (A Journal of Mathematical Programming and Operations Research), Journal of Mathematical Analysis and Applications, Operators and Matrices, Applied Mathematics and Computations, and Applied Mathematical Modeling. He has given several invited and contributed research talks on optimization at international conferences including the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Chile, Italy, Singapore, Oman and Jordan. He has served as a reviewer for journals such as Mathematical Reviews, JOTA, Journal of Computational and Applied Mathematics, and Journal of Supercomputing. So far, he has supervised three graduate students and has been the principal investigator of a funded research project in optimization at the University of Jordan. He has recently begun a one-year research visit with the School of Mathematical Sciences at Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) in Rochester, NY where he will collaborate with colleagues on a research project in stochastic optimization in abstract spaces.
Updated 1/2019

Corban (Corby) Harwood
('11 PhD Math.)

Corban (Corby) Harwood is an associate professor of mathematics in the department of mathematics and applied science at George Fox University in Newberg, Oregon. His research focus is in the area of Numerical Partial Differential Equations. He develops and analyzes algorithms which can be used to approximate solutions to multivariable differential equations which are numerically stable and free of unwanted oscillations. Such equations can model various phenomena from the reaction and diffusion of chemicals to the propagation of waves. He contributed "Steady and Stable: Numerical Investigations of Nonlinear Partial Differential Equations" in the recently published A Primer for Undergraduate Research: From Groups and Tiles to Frames and Vaccines to guide undergraduate students in analyzing eigenvalues and von Neumann error growth factors for numerical methods to predict their long term behavior and seek optimal conditions for trustworthy and feasible solutions while decreasing error and computational time. Corby and his wife have two children and they live in Newberg, Oregon. They enjoy hiking in the Willamette valley, camping on the Oregon coast, and strolling downtown with kids in tow. In his spare time, Corban likes to bike around Newberg and explore the gorgeous views. He was advised by V.S. Manoranjan.
Updated 1/2019

Bonni (Kealy) Dichone
('11 PhD Math.)

Bonni (Kealy) Dichone recently received her promotion to associate professor at Gonzaga University. In Spring 2018, Springer International Publishing released the textbook, “Comprehensive Applied Mathematical Modeling in the Natural and Engineering Sciences”, co-authored with David J. Wollkind, WSU Professor Emeritus. This spring, the textbook “An Introduction to Numerical Methods Using MATLAB”, co-authored by Khyrudding A. Ansari, professor of mechanical engineering at Gonzaga, will be released by SDC Publications. In addition to teaching mathematics at Gonzaga, Bonni teaches and choreographs at Artistry in Motion Dance and Performing Arts Studio and can be seen in several short films and commercials. She and her husband, Paulo, enjoy living in Spokane and are thrilled and excited to be expecting their first child in the spring of 2019. She was advised by David Wollkind.
Updated 1/2019

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Alice Tian
('11 PhD Math.)

Alice Tian currently lives in Wilmington Delaware, with her husband and two children. She works for Barclays Bank and is Vice President of Model Review and Model Risk Management. Prior to this, she worked for JPMorgan Chase risk management for five years, a job she took right after graduating from WSU.
Updated 1/2019

Daryl Deford and wife Katie

Daryl Deford
('10 BS Theoretical Math.)

After completing his B.S. in Theoretical Mathematics Summa Cum Laude from WSU, Daryl Deford completed his Ph.D. in Mathematics in 2018 from Dartmouth. While there he received college-wide awards for research and teaching. During his last three years at Dartmouth he volunteered at a local middle school, coaching their math team to two State MathCount wins. He also taught calculus, mathematical modeling and research ethics, and developed workshops on LaTeX for undergraduates and high school students in mathematics camps. He and his office mate compiled a 250+ book of solutions to written qualification exam problems. He is presently a postdoc in the Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) at MIT, associated with the Metric Geometry and Gerrymandering Group (MGGG). Their focus is on developing mathematical tools for detecting and combating gerrymandering, which includes academic research on foundational issues of redistricting related to MCMC methods for sampling graph partitions, and geometric measures of compactness, in addition to practical involvement with court cases and citizen's initiatives. He is involved in open source data analysis efforts, providing tools for community organizations to engage with the redistricting process. He and his wife, Katie, celebrated their 11th wedding anniversary this summer. They and their two cats live in Somerville, MA after living in Windsor, VT, Nowich, VT, and Lebanon, NH. They have loved living in the northeast and have taken advantage of the wonderful scenery and cute little towns to visit in New Hampshire and Vermont. They've also taken several trips to see the historical sites in DC, Philadelphia, NYC, and Boston.
2017 Dartmouth Teaching Award
2018 Dartmouth Hannah T. Croasdale Scholar Award
Updated 1/2019

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Nathan Moyer
('10 PhD Math.)

Nathan Moyer is an associate professor of mathematics at Whitworth University in Spokane, Washington. He loves teaching at Whitworth and has had the opportunity to develop and teach new courses including his favorite, cryptography. He enjoys working with students on research projects and advising many into mathematics graduate programs. He and his wife Lindy have four children ages 9, 7, 5, and 3. There is never a dull moment at their house, as the days are filled with school, ballet and piano recitals, church activities, and sports. During the summer months they love to go on camping trips to explore the Pacific Northwest. He was advised by Bill Webb.
Updated 1/2019

Andrew Stevens
('09 MS Math.)

Andrew Stevens is the owner and Chief Scientist at OptimalSensing LLC ( From 2009 to 2017 he was a staff scientist at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL). While working at PNNL, he completed his Ph.D. in electrical and computer engineering at Duke University (May 2018). Andrew works on compressive sensing and machine learning problems, especially in scientific imaging and electron microscopy. He has developed several new algorithms and imaging approaches (5 patents pending) that allow scientists to analyze materials and chemical processes at the atomic level. Many of the most important processes in materials engineering and biology/medicine occur by the movement of atoms—such as the storing of charge in Li-ion batteries and drug interactions with cells to cure disease. Understanding and controlling the way that atoms move will lead to new technologies that address the major global challenges of energy, defense, and human health.
He was advised by Sergey Lapin.
Google Scholar:

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Amy Yielding
('09 PhD Math.)

Amy Yielding is an Associate Professor of Mathematics at Eastern Oregon University (EOU). In 2016 she received the EOU honor of Distinguished Faculty Member ( an award given to one faculty member each year. At that time she also received recognition from the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality for work she and her students completed on Air Quality Alerts in Burns, Oregon ( Amy has a three year old daughter, Josephine, a 1 year old doggie, Chewbacca Picard Adama Yielding, and an amazing husband (who is a stay at home papa), Jason.  They enjoy backpacking trips every year in the Eagle Cap Wilderness, cross country skiing every winter in the Blue Mountains, and camping out each summer on the Oregon Coast. Each summer Amy enjoys growing a vegetable garden, and every day she enjoys daily yoga and a properly brewed coffee.
Updated 1/2019

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Daniel Forsman
('07 BS Math.)

Daniel Forsman has lived in the Olympia, Washington area since graduating from WSU and is a credentialed property/casualty actuary working for the Washington State Office of the Insurance Commissioner. He achieved the rare distinction of passing each of the seven associate exams for membership in the Casualty Actuarial Society on his first try, when the average pass rate is approximately 40%. He has recently taken a break from studying for further credentials to pursue a second career developing software and analytics for 6-4-3 Charts which is an emerging company in baseball scouting. The company has approximately 75 clients and worked exclusively with Division 1 baseball programs during the 2018 season. They are preparing to expand to Division 1 softball, Division 2 baseball, and Division 3 baseball for the 2019 season. Dan became interested in mathematics as a 10-year-old-fan obsessed with baseball statistics and simulation. He is happily married to another Coug and they still make it back to Pullman for an occasional football weekend.
Updated 1/2019

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Michael Harbour
('07 BS Math.)

Since graduating from WSU, Michael Harbour has worked the last 11 years in various actuarial roles for the Office of the State Actuary in his hometown of Olympia, Washington.  His efforts are primarily focused on the pension valuations for the state’s public employees, teachers, police officers, and fire fighters.  During this time he has also earned his professional credentials as an Associate for the Society of Actuaries and a Member of the American Academy of Actuaries.  He particularly enjoys working with the Board for Volunteer Fire Fighters on their pension and duty-related injury plan, the Guaranteed Education Tuition program, and estimating the future obligations associated with retiree medical subsidies offered by certain public employers in Washington. In 2014 he married fellow Cougar alum, Erin Treadway, who is now a high school science teacher who also coaches cheerleading.  Over the last year, they’ve spent most of their time building a home and chasing their 16-month old daughter around.  "I love golfing with friends, mentoring my SigEp fraternity undergraduates, and making spreadsheets.  Erin and I also love food and traveling the world. We return to Pullman regularly for football games and the Harbour family reunion over the 4th of July."
Updated 1/2019

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Andrew Fowler
('06 MS Math., '04 BA Math.)

Andrew Fowler is a senior researcher at Nuance Communications ( From 2007 to 2010 he worked as a data analyst at Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories in Pullman, Washington, before joining Google as a software engineer. He joined Nuance in 2018, where he develops language models for speech recognition systems used in the automotive industry. Andrew is also working part time on a Ph.D. in computer science at Oregon Health & Science University. His research interests include discriminative language modeling and speech systems for people with physical disabilities. In 2014, Andrew won the Three Minute Thesis competition for the State of Oregon ( Andrew's advisor at WSU was Bala Krishnamoorthy, focusing on bioinformatics. His masters topic was Three-body Statistical Potential for Protein Discrimination.
Updated 1/2019

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David Koslicki
('06 BS Math.)

After graduating from WSU in 2006 David Koslicki went on to obtain a Ph.D. in mathematics from Pennsylvania State University in 2012 under the supervision of Dr. Manfred Denker. David held postdoctoral positions at Drexel University and the Mathematical Biosciences Institute at Ohio State University before starting a tenure track assistant professor position in the mathematics department at Oregon State University in 2013. David has also been a visiting scholar at UCLA and the University of Cambridge. Starting in the Fall of 2019, he will begin a position as associate professor with tenure at Pennsylvania State University in the computer science and engineering department, biology department, and the Huck Institute of the Life Sciences. David's wife, a physical therapist, and their border collie mix will join them on their move across the country to Penn State. David and his wife enjoy traveling, having been to 45 different U.S. states and 14 different countries, and are active in their local church. David's current research focuses on developing efficient computational algorithms to extract insight from biological sequencing data and he has been funded by the National Science Foundation and National Institutes of Health. He mainly focuses on analyzing communities of microorganisms, a field referred to as "metagenomics."
Updated 1/2019

Kent Griffin

Kent Griffin
('06 PhD Math.)

Since April 2013 Kent Griffin has been a software contractor developing programs (using C++ and Python) to help analyze and evaluate RADAR systems for the 84th Radar Evaluation Squadron (84th RADES) of the U.S. Air Force. This is a highly specialized unit of personnel who ensure optimal performance of radars and sensors used in the defense of North America, as well as in support of combat operations. In addition, they support federal and military agencies, including the U.S. Air Force Safety Center by performing radar forensics on aircraft mishaps, as well as search and rescue missions. Kent is currently employed by Resource Management Concepts, Inc.  As of 2019, he is named on 19 issued software patents. Prior to his time as a software contractor, he established the first store of a leading national cell phone repair franchise in Utah from 2011 to 2013. From 2006 to 2011 he was with Symantec Research Labs in Culver City, CA, working the first 3 years as a senior principal software engineer to protect Internet Explorer from exploits. His solution was marketed as one of the top differentiating features of Norton Symantec's 2008 consumer Internet security solutions and he filed two patents during this period. He then became Director of the Core Research Group of Symantec Research Labs and led a team of 7 full-time researchers to develop new technologies for the commercialization of Symantec's next-generation security and storage products. He was advised by Michael Tsatsomeros.
Updated 1/2019

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Andrew (Andy) Loveless
('05 PhD Math.)

Andrew (Andy) Loveless has worked as a principal lecturer (the highest rank for this position) in the department of mathematics at the University of Washington since obtaining his Ph.D., a position he clearly loves. In his classes, Andy utilizes a strategy of gamification that emphasizes student engagement to mitigate math’s intimidating reputation as a challenging academic roadblock. “People like solving puzzles,” he explains. “If you can make the math just a puzzle, a game, and problem solving, usually it goes better.” Typically, he teaches 8 large classes each year with approximately 150+ students per class from across the freshman/sophomore math curriculum. Being an avid tennis player he says, “I’m a guy who’s about practice, practice, practice. Just because you know how to do that problem, you still have to practice. You need to just hammer it into the ground until you get it. I tell my students the tests are the game.” In addition to teaching he has developed a large number of free course resources, and produces a weekly class newsletter that contains problems for students to review and gives them a look at classwork in the week ahead, along with words of encouragement. In his position he also advises and mentors graduate students. His unwavering dedication to students earned him the University of Washington's 2012 Distinguished Teaching Award as well as an Honors Excellence in Teaching Award, but for Andy being in the classroom is a reward unto itself. “I get to interact with musical talents, with sports stars, with students that are traveling abroad — all doing fun things,” he says. “There aren’t many places like a university campus—all the opportunities, all the excitement.” He and his wife ,who teaches middle school in Seattle, have 3 children. Their children are involved in basketball, baseball, soccer and tennis, which means they help run the local baseball league and coach many of the kids teams. Formerly an all-conference varsity tennis player before attending WSU, he has recently returned to the sport by competing in "35 and over" open tournaments saying, "I'm enjoying pretending to be a kid again, despite the protests from my body."
Updated 1/2019

Nag Parthasarathi
('04 PhD Math.)

Nag Parthasarathi joined Black Hills State University in 2004 as an assistant professor in mathematics after receiving his Ph.D. in mathematics. During the course of the next 5 years he worked on various grant and research projects as both a co-PI and PI, which included a grant from the NIH. In 2009-2010 he became an associate professor in mathematics. During the following five years he worked on various projects, including a Black Hills Math Circle to provide challenging math problems and topics for high school students. He also collaborated on an NSF grant regarding the application of algebraic geometry to electrical power system network problems with a colleague at North Dakota State University. In 2014-2015 he became a professor of mathematics, a position he currently holds. He is the undergraduate coordinator for research, which includes facilitating an undergraduate research conference held each year in late March at Black Hills State University, and arranging for students to participate in the annual National College Undergraduate Research. He is a recipient of a Black Hills State University Distinguished Faculty Award and served as Faculty Senate President for three years. Recently he decided to make a lifestyle change and has taken up Crossfit workouts as a hobby, along with some hiking and running.
Updated 1/2019

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Korash Hernandez
('01 MS Statistics)

Korash Hernandez has a passion for data-driven decision making that leverages cutting edge technology to better serve everyone. This passion and drive led him to found (“Status”) in 2016. Status compares and analyzes members interest rates, spending, debts, and assets, using machine learning algorithms to find opportunities for members to save and earn smarter. Prior to co-founding, Korash spent six years at premier banks in New York, including a role as Vice President at Goldman Sachs where he was the 8th employee hired for “Marcus by Goldman Sachs.” He also worked at Citibank serving as head of digital analytics for credit card acquisitions. Prior to Citi, Korash led fraud and credit modeling at T-Mobile for 9 years. Korash holds a master’s degree in statistics from WSU and a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from the University of Oregon.
Updated 1/2019

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Andy Felt
('00 PhD Math.)

Andy Felt is professor of mathematical sciences at University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point (UWSP), where he has been since August, 2000. He teaches operations research courses, among others. In 2006, Andy started the UWSP Center for Athletic Scheduling, a student-run group which creates schedules for NCAA Division III conferences around the country. Most of his research is in collaboration with undergraduates. He has published and presented (mostly with students) on the following topics: voting systems, geodesic domes, assigning students to schools, academic course scheduling, athletic scheduling, math games for families, stochastic model predictive control, and prisoner's dilemma. He is the first recipient of the UWSP award for Excellence in Teaching, Scholarship, and Service. Andy has been the president of the UWSP faculty/staff union since 2010. Andy and his wife Elizabeth have two sons (born in Pullman), who are both in college. Together, the family has published a children's mystery novel called "The Stolen Golden Violin." Elizabeth teaches English at UWSP, and has written several novels. He was advised by Ari Ariyawansa."
Update 01/2023: For the 2023 academic year, Professor Felt has secured a Polish-U.S. Fulbright Commission grant to teach Introductory Modeling and Project/ Problem Based Learning in the Applied Physics and Mathematics Department of Gdańsk University of Technology in Poland.

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Scott Wilde
('07 PhD Math., '04 MS Math.)

Scott Wilde is currently in his 15th year of teaching calculus, business calculus, linear algebra and differential equations at Baylor University in Waco, Texas. He teaches 11 classes each year (including summer) and serves as the Baylor Math Club advisor. Scott along with his wife Shari and their two younger children, live in a modified dorm room in a Baylor Residence Hall where he serves as a Faculty-in-Residence. "I really enjoy teaching mathematics and I enjoy getting to know the students. I'm thankful to be 'working' at something I love. Helping students inside and outside of the classroom is extremely rewarding." After a mission trip to Germany in the summer of 2016 Scott began studying German and has just completed his 5th semester of German language courses. In addition to learning German he recently finished a half-marathon. Since he isn't a gifted linguist or runner, both of these undertakings have brought home the difficulty many students encounter when they're trying to learn mathematics. "There have been plenty of times I've wanted to quit but instead I've worked hard and persevered, and this is what I encourage my students to do with mathematics." Although he lives in Waco, he admits that he doesn't know Chip or Joanna Gaines of "Fixer Upper" and has never been to the Magnolia Silos. He was advised by Darrell Kent.
Updated 1/2019

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Richard R. Drake
('95 PhD Math.)

Richard R. Drake received his Ph.D. in applied mathematics in late 1995 under adviser, Dr. Mano Manoranjan. In 1996 he moved to Panama City, Florida to take a postdoctoral position at the Air Force Research Laboratory's Armstrong Laboratory, where he worked on modeling ground water transport of contaminant releases, and compared the results to data from a release experiment taking place concurrently. In early 1998, he moved to Albuquerque, New Mexico to take a job with Sandia National Laboratories as a computational scientist in a Research & Development Science & Engineering position.  Sandia is one of the National Nuclear Security Administration's enterprise locations whose primary mission is maintaining the safety, reliability, and security of the nuclear stockpile.  Richard joined a team of physicists, engineers, and computer scientists developing a high energy, high deformation solid mechanics code, named ALEGRA, whose niche was a coupled electromechanics capability.  The ALEGRA code is part of the Accelerated Strategic Computing Initiative in response to the Nuclear Test Ban Treaty, and is a high performance computing application running on one to many thousands of home-sized computers connected by very fast networks (commonly known as a super computer). While at Sandia he has been a project lead on a handful of significant projects, and was promoted to principle member of the technical staff in 2004.  He is currently the project lead for development and operations of the Sierra suite of physics simulation codes, which consists of millions of lines of code and tens of thousands of tests, and is distributed to the National Nuclear Security Administration and Department of Defense labs across the country. He has been happily married to Brenda Drake for over 18 years, with three wonderful children and three grandchildren.  Brenda is a New York Times bestselling author who has published over seven books in the young adult fantasy genre.
Updated 1/2019

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Lyle Cochran
('93 PhD Math.)

After earning his Ph.D. Lyle Cochran taught mathematics at Fresno Pacific University in Fresno, California, from 1993 to 1995, before joining the faculty at Whitworth University in Spokane, Washington where he continues to teach and research. He is coauthor of a calculus text with Bill Briggs (CU-Denver), Bernard Gillett (CU-Boulder), and Eric Schulz (Walla Walla Community College), which is used widely across the nation including Oregon State University, Clemson University, and Washington State University. He is the recipient of the 2010 Whitworth University Academic Challenge Award. "The year 1995 was both a scary and exciting year for me. I had surgery for thyroid cancer and three weeks later I married Susan Wada (class of 1992 WSU College of Veterinary Medicine) who has been practicing veterinary medicine ever since she graduated." In his spare time he enjoys fly fishing and has fun practicing dog training on their golden retriever, Emi. He was advised by Sandy Cooper.
Updated 1/2019

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Blake Peterson
('93 PhD Math., '90 MS Math.)

After completing his Ph.D. Blake Peterson joined the faculty of the Mathematics Department at Oregon State University in a mathematics education position. Blake and his wife Shauna started their time in Pullman in 1988 with one child and had their fourth child five days before moving to Corvallis in July of 1993. In 1996, he moved to Provo, Utah to continue his teaching and research at Brigham Young University. From 1996 to 2000, he was in the Department of Mathematics but in 2000 a new Department of Mathematics Education was created in the College of Physical and Mathematical Sciences. Blake became a member of that department where he advanced to full professor and served as the department chair from 2014 to 2020. His research interests include mathematics teacher education in Japan where he spent 2 months at Ehime University studying student teaching in 2003. More recently he has focused on understanding effective ways to identify and build on teachable moments in the mathematics classroom and hopes to continue that work by studying how teachers learn to do that. In addition to his research, he loves to teach and in 2015 received a national award from the Association of Mathematics Teacher Education for excellence in teaching. His hobbies include mountain biking, basketball, gardening, and spending time with his family which now includes spouses of his 4 children and 6 grandchildren. Blake’s advisor was James Jordan.
Updated 7/2022