Northeastern math professors bridge the gap for high school calculus programs
In 1994, Northeastern math professor Robert Case was concerned with the lack of advanced math courses in the BPS, primarily composed of underrepresented minorities, including African American and Hispanic students. Not only were there not many of these advanced courses, there were also many students with gaps in their math education, preventing them from reaching calculus by their senior year.
Case wanted to begin a program that would give extra attention to these students in the summer before their senior year in order to help them make a leap towards calculus. And thus, Bridge to Calculus was born.
Bridge to Calculus also emphasizes the importance of college; many of the students are interested in futures in science and engineering. The program’s alliance with The Bottom Line, a college preparatory counseling group for first-generation and low-income students, helps students prepare for college. Students also have the opportunity to meet Bridge to Calculus alumni and learn about their path since high school. Alumna Dr. Frinny Polanco has been a guest speaker the past two years. She was successfully able to reach calculus her senior year and years later has become a pediatrician at Tufts Medical Center.
This year’s classes will wrap up courses with a reception on August 3rd, as well as a series of presentations the following day from the programming students.