Math Professor Gets Two Key Grants

A photo of Nathaniel Stapleton. Nathaniel Stapleton in the Department of Mathematics recently received two grants for new tools in chromatic homotopy theory, a project funded by the National Science Foundation. The awards include an NSF standard grant and a grant from the United States-Israel Binational Science Foundation. Read more here: 

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Monday Memos 8/26/19

Welcome to the first Monday Memo of the 2019/2020 school year.  I will be updating this area of my profile with announcement so that you're able to find information I send you easily!


Walk-In Hours 

This week, August 26 - August 30, I will be seeing students as Walk - Ins.  Please come to POT 202 to check in.


First Year Meetings

If you are new to UK, please set up a meeting during the month of September with me via your myUK page.  

To make an appointment, please use these instructions:

Discovering My Place

The University of Kentucky is bigger than I understood before I sat wedged in with thousands of my fellow newly inducted freshman (or super junior in my case) and recognized this huge crowd was maybe a quarter of the undergraduate class on campus.  I added the graduate and professional populations and that was when I began to consider UK its own "Learning Town" in the middle of Lexington.

At this point, halfway through what I imagine will be four undergraduate semesters on campus, there is a lot of work but I am engaged with the material and enthusiastic to progress.  I intend to add some of the works I am creating for my classes here.  I intend to build a student portfolio with this bog.  I have some completed work I intend to post here, but I want to see what grade I get before I do.  I suppose I might try to document my overall UK experience in posts like this as well.  Or this might be the only post like this.  Time will tell.

Brad's Blurb

This month I thought I would pass on a TED Talk: What Makes Us Feel Good About Our Work?  The talk is by Dan Ariely, a Professor of Psychology and Behavioral Economics at Duke University.  Ariely puts forth a case that people are motivated at work for a variety of complex reasons.  He says, “When we think of labor, we usually think about motivation and payment as the same thing, but the reality is that we should probably add all kinds of things to it:  meaning, creation, challenges, ownership, identity, pride, etc.” Check out the 20 minute video that provides some interesting implications for what makes us feel good about our work.

Regards, Brad

Brad's Blurb

When March arrives, many of us automatically think of St. Patrick’s Day and the coming of spring…NOT!  We think of March as above all other things, a time for brackets, bravado, and bragging.  March Madness runs from mid-March until the end of April.  Some economists contend that this annual event costs American companies and organizations almost 2 billion a year paid to unproductive workers spending time on betting pool priorities.  In addition, the amount of money wagered has routinely exceeded the 2 billion mark.  Yet each year we are certain that this is our time to select the perfect bracket.  With over 70 million+ basketball brackets filled out, each one has a 9.2 quintillion chance of predicting the correct winners of every game.  Good luck and let the madness begin!  BTW, I have the MEAC tournament champions, N.C. Central winning it all.  The lowest seed to win a Men’s NCAA championship was a number 8 seed, Villanova, in 1985.  The lowest seed to win a Women’s NCAA championship was a number 3 seed, Tennessee, in 1997.  

Brad's Blurb

Have you ever felt like your day-to-day routine was becoming too monotonous?  Or felt that you were stuck in a rut going through life’s motions as if on autopilot?  If so, then you have probably also heard that quiet voice whispering in your mind telling you to “change it up a bit”, “live a little”, or “do something different”.  Below is a short list of 16 suggestions and reminders (provided in a blog by Howard Thurman) to help stop just going through the motions.  Take off the autopilot and incorporate changes into your daily routine to help recharge yourself.  Several of these resonated with me.  For example, reference #3, I recently pulled out some old Johnny Cash CDs that I had not listened to in many years.  All I can say is that the music was pretty darn good!   Wild and crazy stuff…living on the edge indeed.  Hey, at least I mixed it up a bit.  Reference #11, I recently drove an alternate route home.  Lo and behold, I found a store I was completely unaware of, that provided a service I drastically needed: clothing alterations.  Like ta-da-you know it!  Just me switching off that autopilot occasionally.     

Brad's Blurb

Humor in the Workplace

“A sense of humor is part of the art of leadership, of getting along with people, of getting things done.” (Dwight D. Eisenhower)

I recently read a magazine article contending that tasteful, deft, and non-snarky humor in the workplace is a key to organizational success.  The article cited several book authors on the subject and here is what they had to say:

Laura Vanderkam, author of What the Most Successful People Do at Work, wrote, “Humor, by its nature, tends to have an edge to it, so people typically tone it down at work,”  “It’s hard to do well and easy to do badly.  Plus, we all have a tendency to take ourselves too seriously.”


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