Math with Moses

A Wednesday lecture by Bob Moses, a renowned civil-rights leader who organized the “Freedom Summer” voter registration drive in Mississippi and went on to found a successful math-literacy program for children, will highlight a two-day summit this week on the importance of mastering basic math skills.

Moses will open the event with a free public lecture at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 27, in UNCA’s Lipinsky Auditorium. He’ll talk about the Algebra Project, a program he founded to help children learn algebra and math. On Thursday, community leaders will gather for a 7:30 a.m. breakfast in UNCA’s Highsmith University Union, followed by workshops from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. focusing on math literacy and its connection to issues such as workforce development, media literacy and social justice. Cost for the workshop is $25 for adults and $10 for students.

Mastering arithmetic matters, according to Joseph F. Damore, president and CEO of Mission Health & Hospitals, which is sponsoring the event with UNCA.

“We hope this conference will help our community understand that basic math literacy is just as important to the men and women who make up our workforce as the ability to read and write,” Damore said in a news release.

Samuel Kaplan, associate professor of mathematics at UNCA, and the university’s Department of Mathematics began a community-outreach program last year called the Asheville Initiative for Mathematics with the goal of improving math literacy among students, teachers, parents and residents.

For more information on the math summit and workshop topics, contact Kaplan at 232-5192, or e-mail skaplan@unca.edu.

— Jason Sandford, multimedia editor

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