Summer 2008

Special Note
Dr. Bryan Hearsey was recently diagnosed with cancer. The initial prognosis is good. Dr. Hearsey underwent surgery August 8th, 2008, and we have received news that the procedure went well. Please keep Dr. Hearsey and his family in your thoughts during this difficult time.

New Roles for Department Faculty
Hearsey tapped for interim dean:
Dewald, London, Yarnall take new responsibilities

After an unsuccessful search for the College's new Dean of the Faculty in spring 2008, Bryan Hearsey was asked by President MacDonald to serve as interim Dean during academic year 2008--09, during which time the College will conduct a new search for a permanent dean. This is an honor for Dr. Hearsey and terrific news for LVC, but has presented the Department of Mathematical Sciences with the task of making up for Hearsey's one-year absence from the department. We are happy to have Tim Dewald, Coordinator of Academic Advising and long time adjunct in the department, take a larger course load into his capable hands. We are also pleased to have Dick London '67, founder of ACTEX publishing company, join us to teach two upper level actuarial science courses this fall. Ken Yarnall will serve as department chair while Dr. Hearsey is dean.
Townsend announces retirement

Mark Townsend has announced that he will retire at the conclusion of the 2008--09 academic year. We look forward to celebrating Prof. Townsend's outstanding career and wishing him the best on his next adventures.

Programming Contest Prowess
The Association of Computing Machinery National Programming Competition was held in late October 2007. Two teams of LVC students went to Shippensburg to compete. One of the teams, Stephanie Blanda '09, Bill Best '09, and David Weaver '09, finished second out of 17 at the site. This put them 22nd out of 138 in the Mid-Atlantic regional. Congratulations, LVC programmers!

Productive Year for Mathematical Physics Research Group
Faculty researchers David Lyons (mathematics) and Scott Walck (physics) and student research assistant Stephanie Blanda '09 (Mathematics and Computer Science) published papers, gave talks and presented posters during the 2007--08 academic year. Lyons and Walck's papers "Maximum stabilizer dimension for nonproduct states" and "Only n-Qubit Greenberger-Horne-Zeilinger States are Undetermined by their Reduced Density Matrices" were published in Physical Review A and Physical Review Letters, respectively. Blanda appears as co-author on the paper "Classification of nonproduct states with maximum stabilizer dimension", also published in Physical Review A.
In fall 2007, Blanda presented her summer 2007 work in a poster titled "Quantum Information and 4-Qubit States" at the Disappearing Boundaries Symposium, held at LVC in October, and in a talk with the same title at the Eastern Pennsylvania and Delaware Section of the Mathematical Association of America, held at Drexel University in November.

In spring 2008, Lyons presented recent work (joint with Walck and Blanda) at research seminars at the Universities of Bristol and York, England, in a talk titled "Maximum Stabilizer Dimension for Multiparty States." In July 2008, Lyons presented a research talk titled "Entanglement Classification using Stabilizer Subalgebras" at Susquehanna University's REU (Research Experience for Undergraduates) program in quantum information theory.

Joerg Mayer
Professor Emeritus Joerg Mayer died March 28, 2008, in Brattleboro, Vermont. Mayer served the College for 27 years, from 1970-1997. Here are some recollections written by Bryan Hearsey.

"Joerg was hired to replace Barney Bissenger in 1970. Barney is the person who, along with Connie Seigel, started the actuarial program at LVC.

Joerg came here from George Mason University. He had not been there long. He spent most of his career in the US at the University of New Mexico where he supervised at least half a dozen PhD theses. At his retirement we had a group of his former PhD students here to celebrate with him. There was also a large party with LVC alumni at Kriederheim.

Joerg hired me in 1971. He was my mathematical grandfather. He supervised Darrell Kent's thesis at New Mexico and Darrell was my thesis advisor at Washington State. One vote for mathematical nepotism.

Joerg will be remembered by those who knew him in many ways. I will always remember his intellectual power, enthusiasm, and curiosity. He is high on the list of the most intelligent and well educated individuals I have known."

Faculty News
Mike Fry In July, Professor Fry attended a week-long workshop at Carnegie Mellon University on developing courseware using the OLI (Open Leaning Initiative) system. He is developing on-line exercises to supplement the text in MAS 102, Precalculus.

David Lyons returned in June from his spring semester 2008 sabbatical stay as a Visiting Fellow at the University of Bristol, England. Lyons divided his time between studying with the Bristol quantum computation and information research group and travel adventure with his family.

Alumni News
(sorted by graduation year)

Melanie (Orth) Henery '99 sent this in August 07. "I am still working for Pfizer, Inc. in New York City as Director, Compliance and Audit Services in the Worldwide Technology group. My husband, Jason, is an environmental consultant with Prime Environmental. While we primarily live in Manhattan, we also have a house in Mount Gretna so we often get back to the area on weekends."

Jeff Enyon '00 "Things are going well for me these days. I'm currently a senior web developer at Guardian Life Insurance. It's sort of a misleading title because I do all kinds of things there (networking, design, support, etc), but mostly I write C# code. I've settled into more of a technology consumer role, as opposed to a technology creator, as they say. I think a couple LVC grads are (or were) working at Guardian as actuaries. I don't know if you remember Mike Riddler or Dave Ferrari, but they were at LVC the same time I was. After LVC I went to Lehigh for grad school and got my masters in computer science. I think you'll be glad to hear that the computer science program at LVC really prepared me to do well there."

Laura Erdman '05, now at Prudential Retirement Services, sent this news right after receiving summer 07's AfterMath. "I realized today when I got the AfterMath news letter that I had not informed you that I received my ASA in May 2007!" Congratulations, Laura!

Adam Gingerich '05
"As of the beginning of May I am officially an ASA. I found out I passed Exam C in January and finished up the FAP Final Assessment in March. That made me the first person in this department to become an ASA in about 20 years and also led a phenominal opportunity for me to transfer to Reutlingen, Germany this fall. Our department is trying to expand to offer more support to our European offices, so it was decided that 3 people from the Philadelphia office would go to Germany and establish a couple teams over there. We are sending a management person and 2 people who are going to be tasked with training at least two business teams and two development teams. I was picked as the person who will be coordinating the interviewing and hiring for the business side and then do the training necessary so that they will be self-sufficient once we come back to Philly in about 3 years.

I'm pretty excited and a little terrified about the whole thing. The other two guys going both have families they will be taking over with them and I'm probably younger than each of them by about 15 years so it'll definately be a shock to my comfort zone. At the very least its going to a great opportunity to experience something new as my first trip to Europe.

Hope all is well with you and LVC. Its been a while since I've been back there now that practically everybody I know has graduated."

Andy Orndorf '05 sent this news in September 07. "I bummed around after I graduated, living with a buddy in Pittsburgh until he graduated, and then moved up to Massachusetts with him. I got a temp job up here doing data entry at Iron Age Corp, which at the time was a turn-around company owned by a private equity firm specializing in control distressed debt investing. I did well enough at that that Iron Age brought me on full time into their accounts payable department. Around the same time, my friend got sick of driving me to work, and politely asked me to leave. He gave me a month. So I got to learn how to drive, buy a car, find an apartment, and move out in 4 weeks, while still going to work. It was fun. I became independent.

I demonstrated a talent for learning systems and improving processes, so the company 'promoted' me into inventory management, to deal with various inventory control problems they were having. While I was moderately successful at that, there were other failures company wide. In January of 07, we filed for bankruptcy. This was great for me, because everyone else basically started jumping ship as soon as they could. This created a need within their general accounting group, and I was one of the only one's left with any great deal of exposure to multiple departments, and so I became a staff accountant. Two months later, my supervisor left, as did the other accountant, leaving me as the sole remaining accountant in the general accounting group. So I got 'promoted' again to a Sr. Staff Accounting position reporting directly to the CFO. I worked in that role as we ran the company down to the point where we no longer needed more than one person handling finance.

The awesome part though was that I was able to parlay that experience into a staff accounting position at Brightcove, in Cambridge. I just started there on Tuesday, and I can tell you that for at least three days now I've been able to perform all of the duties beyond expectation. It still amazes me though. I mean, it's me, but I've got nice clothes, leather shoes, a briefcase and business cards... me."

Renee (Kitchenman) McGovern '06 "The only update I have is that I got married in June, 2007 to Nick McGovern, and we bought a house in Levittown, PA. I still work for ACE."

Bailey Claeys '07 "I've begun working at Towers Perrin in Philadelphia. After two jobs that were short term until I found a full time position (working in collections and internal audit), I interviewed for a retirement position with the benefits group at Towers. And I'm really happy with that move as a stepping stone. I'm working on several different clients producing benefit calculations and one huge severance program. Keeps me busy!

Other than working, I keep busy by playing in a concert band in West Chester and singing in the adult choir at church two nights a week. And dreaming of the next sailing trip......not till summer 2009 though."

Stacy Geisler '07 "I was working for Arrow International in Reading, PA for about 6 months. They are a medical supply company and I was hired as a Quality Engineer. I wasn't quite sure that I wanted to keep with that job, so I did some job searching and I ended up getting a great job with a company called Vocollect in Pittsburgh. I've been working here for a little over 3 months. I am a quality software test engineer. Vocollect is a voice-recognition software company and we are number 1 in our field. Our product is mostly used in warehouses, however we are expanding into new areas such as healthcare. It's a very difficult company to get into, but my brother actually works here as a developer. He put my resume in for me and I was called immediately. It's a fairly small company, only a few hundred people. Corporate is where I work- here in Pittsburgh, but we do have small locations all over the world and our product is used all over the world. Wal-Mart is actually one of our biggest customers and we are on our way to expanding into Japan, which is huge. It's really a great company to work for and I'm happy I made the move."

Alan Newsome '07 sends news of himself and others. "Things are going really well. I am enjoying my job here at Towers Perrin. I work in the department responsible for supporting our pension software. Currently my team is updating the software to include changes required by the Pension Protection Act.

In other news, I passed FM in May and took MLC in November. I scored a 5 so I am now studying for it again. I also began the first five FAP modules. I am on the end-of-module two exercise.

... here is a listing of what everyone is doing:
Mike Yannick '07 works at Towers Perrin in the same department as me. He passed FM in November.  Jason Shook '07 works at Zurich in Maryland and passed MLC in November. Myles Kitchen '07 also works at Zurich in the same department as Jason and passed his 5th exam in November. Adam Gingerich '05 passed M in November and is 2 modules away from becoming an ASA. Chad Hollenbach '07 has been promoted to a Team Lead and is an expecting father this summer. Rusty Bentz '05 is now married to another LVC grad. His spouse's first name is Lynn but I am not sure of her maiden name."

Erik Vargo '07 "I thought I'd take some time to let you know how my first year at William and Mary went. I've enjoyed my classes so far in the operations research program. Most have either dealt with optimization (e.g. linear programming) or prob/stat (e.g. regression, computational probability, simulation analysis). While there is a definite applied emphasis, there is also enough theory to keep us honest. The program at LVC was excellent preparation, especially the prob/stat sequence since we draw on that material so heavily. Of course, the OR classes with Dr. Fry were a great jump start as well.

I'm currently involved in a research project with two professors (one from WM and one from VT) and I'll be joining a second in the Fall. In two weeks I'll be heading back down to VA for an internship at NASA Langley. I hope that experience will help me decide what I'd like to do after graduation next Spring.

Thanks again for the excellent preparation and I hope you all had a great year at LVC."

Send news and comments to or by regular mail to AfterMath, Department of Mathematical Sciences, Lebanon Valley College, 101 N. College Avenue, Annville, PA 17003.