Address delivered by the Executive Director at the closing ceremonies in MathPath 2002
July 27, 2002
Blackhills State University
Parents, students, staff, and faculty:
The year 2002 A.D. - or C.E. as it is now also referred to - marked on this continent the first summer of a mathematics camp for profoundly gifted middle school students - a total program in pure mathematics - unlike the summer courses that have run at many a university or center for the talented.
It is a triumph of the striving human spirit that despite falling on personal financial hard times this past year and despite the smoke from the vast forest fire in nearby hills threatening to cancel the camp in the days prior to its first day, I have prevailed. And I acknowledge the courageous support of the parents and the redoubled effort of the wonderful staff.
The students, staff, and faculty have made this a summer experience enriching the lives of all participants. In the history of this great nation, yet another experiment has gloriously succeeded - that future mathematicians can be taken early on the mathematical path so that elementary concepts they should have had at this stage of their mathematical lives have been imparted to them; they can see, better than their predecessors, the connections of interrelated mathematical concepts; and they have been in a fun month-long environment where respect and regard for others were the norm. Above all, you spent time and made friends with peers who love math just like you do!
Now I humbly bid you to go forth from this camp and rise in life by sustained and concentrated work in your area of activity. May you become a beacon of character and achievement shining for the future generations, especially of Mathpath of which you are the first alumni!
George Rubin Thomas, Ph.D.
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