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Homework Hotline Breaks Record

June 1, 2011

Homework Hotline: Another Record Year Helping Indiana Youths


Homework Hotline  
Busy Tutor: Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology student Kisha Bradley was among Homework Hotline tutors that assisted callers during the 2010-11 school year.    

It's on the speed-dial for many an algebra student, providing a lifeline for those struggling to understand math and science.  Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology's Homework Hotline toll-free telephone tutoring service finished its 19th year after answering a record number of calls, 47,976, for the 2010-11 school year.  

The record-breaking 2010-11 call total is an increase of 1,748 calls from last year.  Since its beginning in 1991, the Homework Hotline has answered 388,586 calls.

Middle and high school students throughout Indiana rely on Rose-Hulman students to help them grasp math and science concepts. 


The service is available from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday through Thursday from mid-September to mid-May.  More than 30 student tutors are available each night to provide one-on-one help to students in the sixth through 12th grades.  The tutors are selected based on their technical knowledge and communication skills. 

"Nothing is better than this job when you talk to somebody and they finally understand something," says tutor Julie Brennan, a mechanical engineering major.

Support of Lilly Endowment, Inc. enables the Homework Hotline to serve students from across the state.

This year the Indianapolis area led the pack of calls with students from Marion County making 5,056 calls and Hamilton County registering 2,266 calls.  Northern Indiana's Lake (Gary/Merrillville) and Allen (Fort Wayne) counties contributed an additional 4,086 calls, combined.  Locally, Vigo County accounted for 1,218 calls to the hotline, while Clay, Parke, Sullivan and Vermillion counties contributed a combined total of 452 calls. 

The Homework Hotline employed 134 tutors and supervisors this year.  These tutors, representing 14 academic majors, could speak nearly a dozen different languages, including Arabic, French, German, Hindi, Japanese, Mandarin, Sinhalese, Spanish, Russian, Urdu and English. 

"Homework Hotline tutors helped students grasp ideas, internalize challenging concepts, and solve complex problems," says Homework Hotline Director Susan Smith.  "Tutors share their interest and excitement about math, science and engineering, while attempting to spark the curiosity and imagination of each student."

Each year, the Homework Hotline recognizes teachers who have promoted the service in their schools or corporations.  Homework Hotline Heroes are teachers that encourage their students to use the hotline as a tool to enhance their academic performance and reinforce classroom concepts.

"The recipients are honored for their support of Homework Hotline and their dedication to mathematics and/or science teaching," Smith explains.

Homework Hotline Heroes in 2010-11 were Kay Nicodemus, mathematics teacher at Plainfield Middle School in Plainfield, and Robert Fischer, math teacher at Honey Creek Middle School in Terre Haute.

Find out more about Rose-Hulman's Homework Hotline at