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2019 Janet Andersen Lecture Award Recipient


Physical Sciences, Mathematics and Computer Science

Dietz JA 2019

Dr. Jill Dietz, Grace A. Whittier Endowed Chair in Science

Department of Mathematics, Statistics and Computer Science

St. Olaf College, Northfield, MN


The nomination letter for Dr. Dietz describes how her active support for undergraduate research (UGR) over the past 23 years has been key in transforming a nascent UGR program into a top priority for the Mathematics, Statistics and Computer Science department at St. Olaf.  By expanding her personal research interests to include topics that are accessible at the undergraduate level she is a role model and a catalyst for a culture of research among both faculty and students.  The nearly 100 undergraduates mentored by Dr. Dietz are evidence of her impact in this area.  Through her development of the Directed Undergraduate Research (DUR) course, mathematics research has become more than a summer or academic year project. The DUR course is now a regular offering in many other disciplines, with academic credit for students and teaching credit for faculty.  Dr. Dietz is acknowledged by students to be among the most popular and effective teachers in a department of creative and dedicated educators. Younger faculty benefit from her insights regarding teaching, research and the general challenges of balancing an academic career with life beyond the campus environment. When not on campus, Dr. Dietz loves to be in nature, especially camping and hiking in the mountains, or boating and swimming at “the cabin” up in central Minnesota.