Do the Math

dothemathProblem: How many math instructors does it take to teach all the math courses that the College of Arts & Sciences offers?

Answer: A lot.

Actually, the correct answer is 59 — 29 of whom started teaching at the university just within the past year-and-a-half. The large increase in student enrollment fueled this growth, says Diane Bansbach, mathematics chair in WilmU’s College of Arts and Sciences.

This group of adjunct instructors follows the university’s practitioner-scholar model. On average, mathematics instructors have 22.8 years of experience in the field, with 47 percent working as educators, 18 percent as financial experts, 26 percent as engineers or scientists, 7 percent statisticians and 2 percent as lawyers.

Additionally, these instructors distinguish themselves in a variety of ways. Many hold doctoral degrees, several are military veterans or own their own businesses, and others have published academic papers, with one holding a patent. They are also community minded, as they volunteer in homeless shelters, churches, school associations and churches.

“The goal of the math instructors at Wilmington University is not only to help students master objectives in quantitative analysis and problem solving, but to build students’ confidence so that they have a ‘growth mindset’ — meaning they believe that they can be successful in mathematics if they put forth effort,” says Bansbach. “Our math instructors show that they care about our students by providing encouragement, answering questions and responding to individual needs.” WU

—Janice Colvin