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2014 Field of Dreams Review

Date: November 7- November 9, 2014
Location: Phoenix East/Mesa Hilton Hotel in Mesa, Arizona
Agenda: 2014 Field of Dreams Agenda of Events (PDF)

We are pleased to report another successful Field of Dreams Conference for the books! The 2014 Field of Dreams Conference was once again held at the Hilton Phoenix/Mesa Hotel in Phoenix, Arizona. Over 325 participants, including 187 undergraduate students, 129 faculty, and many other representatives from additional organizations, were in attendance from over 110 universities, colleges, and organizations nationwide.

Friday afternoon kicked off with and interactive workshop on maximizing your opportunities at a conference. This workshop highlighted the importance of preparation, prioritization and networking during a conference to make sure you receive the greatest experience possible. Postdoctoral Fellows from seven of eight the Math Sciences Institutes followed with informational presentations on their specific research area. Friday closed with an evening reception with an outstanding 56 exhibitors during the Graduate/Career/Summer Programs Fair.

We were honored to have Dr. Jim Gates, University of Maryland, to give the Math Science Talk Saturday morning entitled “On the Subtle influences of Style & Culture in STEM Disciplines”. There was something for everyone on Saturday with panels ranging from “How to Succeed in a Doctoral Program” and “Careers in the Mathematical Sciences” for Alliance Scholars and panels discussing mentoring experiences, tips, and lessons for Alliance Mentors.

A new edition to this year’s program was a panel on the Facilitated Graduate Applications Process (formally the Uniform Admissions Process). A panel comprised of faculty who have nominated and worked with students in this process, as well as students who successfully completed the process last year, discussed how the program works and the improvements that are being made. Another highlight included Dr. Phil Kutzko, Alliance Director, Dr. Jennifer Pearl, National Science Foundation, and Dr. Donald McClure, American Mathematical Society shared some exciting new developments within the Math Alliance alongside. Dr. Kimberly Weems, North Carolina State University, Dr. Leslie McClure, University of Alabama at Birmingham, and Dr. Snehalata Huzurbazar, University of Wyoming shared an update from the Statistics Initiative and a tribute to the late Dr. Kathryn Chaloner. We were pleased to have Dr. Joan Evans, Texas Southern University, close the evening with her powerful keynote speech at dinner. For a full agenda of events please click here.

We would like to thank everyone who helped prior and during the conference, and all our sponsors and panelist for making this conference our best one yet! Check out our Flickr site for plenty of photos from the 2014 Field of Dreams Conference. If you’d like to share your stories or photos from the conference send them to

2014 Field of Dreams Conference review from Dr. Mark Tomforde and the University of Houston.