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Numbers Not Just for Nerds


by Kim Kielly, The Express, May 18-24, 2006

... Amanda Lambert and Renée Lynch are two good examples. They don't fit the typical math nerd stereotype. But they definitely know their stuff when it comes to the subject.

Lambert has a bachelor of science degree. Her major was math. Her minor was computer science. Lynch has an education degree with a heavy emphasis on math.

Both are successfully working in fields directly related to their love of mathematics. Lambert designs surveys for her clients while Lynch teaches Grade 5. Her knowledge of numbers has helped her in interpreting the new math curriculum to her students.

And when Lambert isn't working in math, she's learning hip hop dance moves or figuring out Soduku puzzles. She's studying for a masters in applied sciences. She says there are lots of resources for anyone struggling in math.

"It can be hard to a point, and then everything falls into place," she says.

When Lynch isn't teaching, she's playing basketball or training for the Regatta. Her advice to students considering math at the university level is not to fear it and to get the help they need because the resources are there.

Mantyka says these two women are great examples of the changing face of math. And that's a good thing. One of her fears is that the dwindling number of math students at a unviersity level will have a far-reaching impact on the province.

"We're struggling to compete now and it's only going to get worse," she says.

"The far reaching effect is that there's almost nothing you can do anymore without a math foundation."