If a love of math plus a commitment to education equals a happy relationship, Austin Community College professors Anne Praderas Vance and Tony Vance may have solved a universal challenge.
At ACC, they’re each helping students with another common challenge: succeeding in math. Anne Vance, associate professor of math, coordinates MATD 0421, an innovative developmental math course that takes advantage of the Highland Campus ACCelerator. Math Professor Tony Vance coaches participants in the Student Math League competition, where ACC students consistently outshine their opponents.
“We’ve commented on how nice it is to have someone who knows what you’re going through,” says Tony. Anne concurs, “It’s really great to have someone who can support you professionally, as well as personally.”
Both are longtime educators who took different paths to ACC. Anne tried a few other majors at the University of Texas at Austin before finding her gift. She joined ACC in 2002 after teaching for several years at Austin’s St. Stephen’s Episcopal School. Tony began teaching at ACC soon after earning a master’s degree in math almost 30 years ago. They became acquainted as colleagues and married last year.
“Don’t try to go it alone. Whether you like the challenge or whether you’re struggling and scared to death, we can find someone who can help.”
Now, while theorems and formulas don’t necessarily dominate their dinnertime conversation, talk about homework and quizzes may come up. This month, both expect to do “a lot of math and a little vacation” when they travel to the American Mathematical Association of Two-Year Colleges conference where Anne will be presenting with fellow ACC Math Professor Mike McCarthy.
And while Tony jokes that math couples are the “wave of the future,” they both know that having someone to talk to is good advice when it comes to math – especially for students.
“The most important thing for math students is to be in close contact with their instructor,” says Anne.
“Don’t try to go it alone. Whether you like the challenge and want to find a professor who can geek out with you, or whether you’re struggling and scared to death, we can find someone who can help.”Back to Top