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Incoming Students on ‘Fast Track’ toward Rose-Hulman Degree

August 28, 2013

Off To Good Start: Mechanical engineering student Thomas Janssen discusses aspects of a laboratory experiment with Physics and Optical Engineering Professor Richard Ditteon, PhD, co-director of the Accelerated Math Physics program. Janssen was one of 32 students completing the five-week program, providing a jump on college. (Photo by Dale Long)

     A select group of freshman students has already experienced success in the classroom for the 2013-14 academic year, successfully completing a full year of calculus and physics courses in just five weeks!

     Fast-Track Calculus and Accelerated Math Physics (AMP) are intensive programs designed to accelerate students’ Rose-Hulman careers. Successful completion provides 13 to 15 credit hours in freshman calculus (Fast-Track Calculus) or calculus and physics courses (AMP) -- essentially allowing students to start any academic program at the sophomore level.

     “It’s not easy,” advises Fast-Track Calculus Director Elton Graves, DA, associate professor of mathematics, “but both of these programs provide students with some distinct advantages, like completing a master’s degree program or a second academic major in four years.”

     Spencer Memering, an electrical engineering student, and Lexi Harris, a chemical engineering major, intend to take advantage of the opportunities afforded by passing the AMP program.

     “I knew that the program would give me a jump-start on college and some distinct advantages along the way,” says Memering.

     Harris currently plans to earn a master’s degree in four years, but could also add a second major in another career field.

     “Completing the program gives you so many options, while also becoming more familiar with the campus, its facilities, and faculty,” she states.

      In its second year, AMP is an integrated program in calculus and physics covering such topics as vectors and parametric equations in three dimensions, Newton's laws of motion, functions of several variables, kinematics, partial derivatives, and conservation of energy and momentum.

     Meanwhile, Fast-Track Calculus reviews differential and integral calculus, covers all of multivariable calculus materials, and helps students become familiar with the computer implementation of mathematics.

     “The students participating in the (AMP) program are now ready for a successful career at Rose-Hulman,” says David Finn, PhD, program co-director. “These students learned how to work together and learn together. They bonded over late nights and early mornings solving calculus problems and physics problems.”

     Students enrolled in each program had completed one year of calculus, analytic geometry, or physics in high school; met other academic and standardized test score requirement, and received recommendations from high school teachers.

     The 32 students completing the AMP program were Nick Allen, Abigail Anderson, Timothy Anderson, Tyler Askren, Ryan Beere, Joshua Blome, Nathan Brooks, Ivel Lee Collins, Ryan Cook, James Ditucci, Ellissa Eckert, Spencer Franks, Kyle Harjes, Lexi Harris, Kylie Hess, Brianna Hibbler, Thomas Janssen, Alvin Koontz, Jonathan Lee, Haolin (Coco) Liu Spencer Memering, Andy Miller, Tyler Miller, Gregory Nathan, Sitara Richter-Addo, Melissa Thai, Jake Thystrup, Max Vos Williams, Riley Wern, Spencer Wright, and Luwen (Addison) Zhang. Former AMP graduates assisting as counselors this year were Abigail Etters, Ian Knapp, Chris Lippelt, and Morgan Mayfield.

     The 39 Fast-Track Calculus program graduates were Alexander Armstrong, Alex Bair, Jake Bellis, Shane Bruggeman, Natalie Buckley, Melinda Buckrop, Benjamin Chang, Molly Clements, Steven Doolan, Andrew Duncan, James Edwards, Jack Eichenberger, Lingtao Ge, Nathan Green, Steven Haussmann, An (David) Hu, Aaron Jones, Sailesh Kadam, Maxwell Kelly, Joe Kendall, Thomas (Max) Kryza, Garrett Manship, Luke Miller, Drew Miner, Varun Naval, Steve Patton, Matt Pershing, Brandon Rudolph, Karan Shishoo, Charles Spaeth, Ben Stevens, Scott Szatkowski, Trent Tatlock, Ben Taylor, Jiaojiao Garrett, Tyler Whitehouse, Natalie Wisniewski, and Qi Zhang.