Ari Azbel is a freshman at Brown University, studying applied mathematics. He attended Lake Highland Preparatory School, where he founded the Orlando Math Circle during his sophomore year. Aside from his interest in math, Ari was also Captain of the debate team.
Margarita Azbel is a Soviet Immigrant who was always looking to supplement her children’s education with arts and sciences. After completing St. John’s law school in New York City, Margarita and her family moved to Orlando. Margarita ran a cultural enrichment program for young children and volunteered her time in local arts organizations and school. After her son, Ariel, left for college, she took over OMC leadership as the OMC executive director.
Isabella F. Delbakhsh
Isabella is a seventh grader at Lake Highland Preparatory School. She has always enjoyed math; recently she got involved with Mathcounts and found it very different from your everyday math and also extremely challenging. Orlando Math Circle has provided her the tools and many opportunities she needed to become more confident and successful with math competitions. Now she enjoys helping younger kids with mathematics.
Tami E. Helletz
Tami is a 9th grader at Lake Highland Preparatory School. She became interested in higher level math when she joined a Mathcounts team and has been hooked ever since. She got involved in Orlando Math Circle at the end of 8th grade when she went to an exploding dots and basketball event.
Zeynep Teymuroglu earned her Ph.D. at the University of Cincinnati. She is an associate professor of Mathematics at Rollins College. Her research interests are social network analysis, mathematical modeling, and teaching social justice mathematics. She teaches Calculus, Differential Equations, and Applied Mathematics courses.
In this article, we summarize our personal journey to establish a successful math circle in a community that is not very familiar with such mathematics enrichment programs. We share the story of how our math circle began three years ago, as well as the lessons we learned and our organizational challenges and successes. Additionally, we outline three primary perspectives: the founder perspective, the student volunteer perspective, and the faculty volunteer perspective.
Description of Math Circle
Mission: Create a diverse and inclusive community of student mathematicians
Strategy: Provide engaging and fun opportunities to do mathematics outside of school
Vision: Equitable access and greater student participation in mathematics
Orlando Math Circle
Contact Info: email@example.com
Azbel, Ariel; Azbel, Margarita; Delbakhsh, Isabella F.; Heletz, Tami E.; and Teymuroglu, Zeynep
"Connecting Mathematics and Community: Challenges, Successes, and Different Perspectives,"
Journal of Math Circles (JMC): Vol. 1
, Article 6.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.cwu.edu/mathcirclesjournal/vol1/iss1/6