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Building Your Foundation Here at Rensselaer when we admit a new student we do so with full regard for that students potential. After nearly two centuries of educating women and men we are proud to say that our instincts have been overwhelmingly confirmed by the success of our graduates. We have three basic goals here in educating students said Mark Holmes Professor of Mathematical Sciences. We want them to develop a body of knowledge. We want them to take ownership of their research and make a contribution. And we also help them look over the horizon to see that this is not just about today but about next year or five years from now or 10 years from now. As involved as we professors are with our own research projects we want to mentor our students for other stages of their lifegraduate school working in national laboratories and more. To ensure success we start by helping students build a foundation in their core subjects. Take for instance mathematics. Calculus is a basic requirement for all science students. This can be challenging for some students. Different students have different rates of adjusting to the demands of college explained Bruce Piper Associate Professor of Mathematical Sciences. To meet student needs around the challenges of calculus Rensselaer has recently introduced an innovative program called Math Mentors which offers the kind of support that can make all the difference for a student. Zuzanna Naumowicz 13 a biochemistry major decided to become involved because she missed math. I thought it would be fun to go back and do some more calculus she said. In addition to the coaching skills she has also enjoyed the aspect of the mentoring that has to do with helping her students handle more general issues like how to manage stress. I think Ive become a more confident speaker as a result of this and it has helped so much in terms of getting to know faculty Naumowicz said. Math Mentors Serving as a math mentor not only means that you can help with a new students transition into Rensselaer but you the mentor can benefit as well. Following a selective process those who are chosen for this role assume a responsibility that is taken very seriously. Devoting an average of 10 hours a week to this work a mentor receives two credits of a 4000-level math courseand a wealth of classroom experience. Michael Puthawala 14 a mathematics major joined the program on the recommendation of a friend who had been a mentor. He said it was a really good opportunity for personal growth said Puthawala. You have to get in front of people you dont know and ingratiate yourself and build trust. Thats a useful skill. the launch pad 10