Janet Liou-Mark Named City Tech’s 2017-2018 Scholar on Campus

Dr. Janet Liou-Mark, Mathematics Department, was recently named the 2017-2018 Scholar on Campus. On April 5th, the College community celebrated at an award ceremony with Dr. Liou-Mark—who delivered her presentation: “Empowering Undergraduates through Leadership, Lessons Learned, and Life-Long Learning.” A reception was held afterwards in the Janet Lefler Dining Room. Dr. Liou-Mark, who is also the director of City Tech’s Honors Scholars Program, has a desire to find creative ways to attract, retain, and graduate students in the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) disciplines. Her research has expanded to creating, identifying, and testing educational models that can be adopted and sustained at institutions across the nation.

Dr. Liou-Mark is a true educator who loves to learn, enjoys empowering others with knowledge, and relishes opportunities to spark the passion of life-long learning in the next generation. Her study, “The Implementation and the Effects of the Peer-Led Team Learning (PLTL) Model in Mathematics,” received the 2011 CUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Mathematics Instruction and the 2014 Mathematical Association of America Metro New York Section Award for Distinguished Teaching of Mathematics. The PLTL model not only enables undergraduates to acquire deeper understanding about how people learn, but it also provides them with the tools and the skills necessary to effectively transfer their mathematical knowledge to their peers.

Dr. Liou-Mark’s research in mathematical education at both the secondary and the undergraduate levels is supported by the many grant awards she has received. Her grants have allowed her to create educational models that foster academic success, not only in mathematics but also in the applied mathematics that is integral to the other STEM disciplines.

For the past several years, much of Dr. Liou-Mark’s research has focused on underrepresented minorities in STEM, including women. She is the co-PI for the National Science Foundation (NSF) Math Science Partnership “MSP in NYC 2–A New Partnership to Transform Urban Secondary School Mathematics and Science Experience,” where she designed a Bridge-to-College Pipeline program using collaborative and peer strategies for graduating 12th graders who served as a Teaching Assistant Scholar in their high schools (2011-present). She is also the co-PI NSF Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) grant titled “Research Experiences for Undergraduates in Satellite and Ground-Based Remote Sensing at NOAA-CREST,” (2011-present) where she studies the effect of a one-year research experience for undergraduates, particularly those who are underrepresented minorities in STEM.

Additionally, she is the co-PI for a NSF Improving Undergraduate STEM Education (IUSE): Pathways into the Geoscience grant, with which she is testing a geoscience workforce model that is designed to train STEM students through a series of workshops and geoscience internships so that they may become marketable for the geoscience workforce. Dr. Liou-Mark is also the co-project director for two consecutive Department of Education Minority Science and Engineering Improvement Program (MSEIP) grants (2006-2009, 2015-present). The grants focus on increasing the enrollment and retention rates of minorities and females in computer science.

Dr. Liou-Mark facilitates the institution’s teaching portfolio workshop for new faculty every semester, and her teaching portfolio model is featured in Peter Seldin’s book, The Teaching Portfolio, 3rd edition. Additionally, she is the current (2015-2018) Chair-elected for the Mathematical Association of America Metro-New York section. Dr. Liou-Mark enjoys empowering women through biblical studies when she organizes training conferences for women in Malawi, Africa, so that they can bring the knowledge back to their villages. Dr. Liou- Mark is also building several libraries for the schools and the orphanages in Malawi. What she is most proud of is that she has personally mentored over 175 underrepresented minority and first- generation STEM students, and a third of them have obtained or are continuing their advanced degrees in STEM.

Since its inception in 1983, the Scholar on Campus Program at City Tech has celebrated the artistic, literary, research, scholarly, scientific and other achievements of selected members of faculty across the disciplines. Those honored have left indelible marks on fields as diverse as the engineering technologies, art and design, computer information systems, healthcare, hospitality, human services, literature, music, physics and other arts and sciences. Scholar on Campus is a program of the College’s Professional Development Advisory Council (PDAC).