Taken from Vanderbilt University Math News
Date Posted: May 7, 2007

Excellence in Teaching: Fumiko Futamura and Casey Leonetti

The 2007 B.F. Bryant Prize for Excellence in Teaching was awarded to two graduate students, Fumiko Futamura and Casey Leonetti, each of whom received the full prize. The B.F. Bryant prize was established in honor of Billy F. Bryant, Professor of Mathematics, Emeritus, who taught at Vanderbilt from 1948 to 1986. It is awarded to graduate teaching assistants in the Department of Mathematics who demonstrate excellence in teaching and sincere concern for students, qualities that characterized the career of Professor Bryant.

Citing their consistently strong student evaluations for the quality of their teaching, Director of Teaching Jo Ann Staples also noted that both women have made additional contributions to student life in the department throughout their graduate careers.
"They've been active in organizing and presenting in the Undergraduate Seminar program, which provides opportunities outside the classroom for students to learn about everything from historical topics to cutting edge research in the field," Staples said. "They've also served as hosts for prospective graduate students and played an important role in creating a sense of community among all the graduate students. In addition, Fumiko was the principal mover in reviving our math club for undergraduates, which had been inactive since the late '60s."

Futamura and Leonetti will both receive their doctoral degrees in May. Following graduation, Futamura will become a tenure-track Assistant Professor in the Mathematics Department at Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas. Leonetti has accepted a position as a consultant for the Boston Consulting Group in Houston, Texas.