MathHappens is a private non-profit founded in 2014. For five years we have been partnering with Austin informal educators to increase and enhance the presence of mathematics in public exhibits, events and installations. We have collaborated with and participated in events at many institutions including the Austin Nature and Science Center, Bullock Texas State History Museum, Austin Zoo, Neill-Cochran House Museum, Texas Medical Association, Oakwood Cemetery, Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, Science Mill, Harry Ransom Center, and the Thinkery. We have interacted with visitors including families, individuals, school groups and tourists by providing ideas, activities, displays or even staff to help connect mathematics organically to the existing and planned exhibits.
At Museum Day 2018, we staffed math activities that we have developed, tested and improved over time at five locations. Our staff for the event comprised MathHappens interns and alumnis, UTeach math department students, and even a Texas State University math student. We are really enjoying collaborations that bring new programming to museums, cultural institutions and their visitors, which bring positive community engagement experiences for the math and science university students who work with us.
MathHappens is founded by Philip and Lauren Siegel. Philip is a managing partner at TritiumPartners, a growth equity fund in Austin, TX. He is a professor at the Acton School of Business and earned his bachelors and MBA at University of Chicago. Lauren is former head of Math at ACE Academy, a graduate of the UTeach teacher preparation program and holds a bachelors degree in Applied Mathematics from University of Chicago. MathHappens’ staff include Michelle Tat, a former intern who is working in the Austin office, and Jennifer June who is coordinating our projects in California.