Mathematical Digest

Short Summaries of Articles about Mathematics
in the Popular Press

"NSF Moves With VIGRE to Force Changes in Academia," by Dana Mackenzie. Science, 24 May 2002, pages 1389-90.

Mackenzie gives an overview of the National Science Foundation's Grants for Vertical Integration of Research and Education program (VIGRE). The program was designed in the late 1990's to improve the training of US mathematics majors and mathematics graduate students, in hopes of increasing the numbers in both groups. Key aspects of the program are the mentoring of students and interaction among undergraduates, graduates and post-docs. In regard to this interaction, Don Lewis, creator of the program says: "I wanted to have the mathematical research environment be more like the environments in other sciences." Mackenzie writes of those institutions happy with VIGRE as well as some that are not. Also included in the article is a list of VIGRE winners.

--- Mike Breen