You may have noticed some new faces around the Mathematics Department! This fall semester the Department welcomes fourteen new research and instructional faculty members.

Peter Haskell, the Interim Chair, said that,  "We had a great hiring season last year, and I eagerly look forward to experiencing the many ways in which these new colleagues will make our department better."

The research faculty represent emerging strengths in a broad set of strategic areas, including numerical analysis, scientific computing, mathematical modeling, high-perfomance computing and coding theory, and the instructional faculty brings a wealth of experience and knowledge that will be invaluable to our students and community.

Learn more about our new faculty members' background and interests in the brief profiles of each below.

Agnieszka Miedlar
Associate Professor Agnieszka Miedlar

Associate Professor Agnieszka Miedlar joins the faculty from the University of Kansas where she was an Associate Professor in Mathematics. 

Professor Miedlar conducts research in numerical analysis and scientific computing, with a focus on iterative solvers for large-scale linear systems and eigenvalue problems, and adaptive finite element methods (AFEMs).

The Applied and Computational Mathematics group at the Department is absolutely world class. I wanted to be its member since I was a graduate student and lucky enough to meet Serkan Gugercin, Chris Beattie, Mark Embree and Eric de Sturler early on. My interest in joining the group got even stronger after my research visit at VT in 2018 which was spectacular.

I always knew that VT provides a unique research environment for scientists interested in truly interdisciplinary work, but it became very clear to me that this is indeed the case during my on campus visit when colleagues from Statistics, Computer Science, Chemistry and Physics came to my interview colloquium presentation and took their time to talk about research. Last but not least, being at the Heat of Appalachia is a pretty good bonus!

Michael Robert Profile Picture
Assistant Professor Michael Robert

Assistant Professor Michael Robert joins the faculty from the Virginia Commonwealth University. Professor Robert's research builds and analyzes mathematical models to study biological phenomena.

Professor Robert's research builds and analyzes mathematical models to study biological phenomena.

I wanted to join VA Tech because the university is home to such a diversity of research expertise that is relevant to my work.

As an interdisciplinary scientist, the potential for new collaborations on campus is very exciting.  I already work with a number of people in the department and across campus, and I look forward to building new collaborations.

As an additional perk, my husband has worked here for two years, so now we get to live and work in the same city for the first time in a decade! 

Paul Cazeaux profile picture
Assistant Professor Paul Cazeaux

Assistant Professor Paul Cazeaux's joins the faculty from the University of Kansas where he was an Assistant Professor in Mathematics.

Professor Cazeaux's research in applied mathematics covers a range of subjects in mathematical modeling, rigorous analysis of partial differential equations and numerical simulations of multiscale phenomena arising from applications in materials science and biology.

 I am excited to join the applied and computational mathematics group at VT - I was really impressed by the collegiality and tight-knit atmosphere during my visit.

Virginia Tech will be a great place to grow my research with new collaborations both within and outside the Mathematics department, for example with the strong groups in Quantum Chemistry and Materials Science.

The innovative Computational Modeling and Data Analytics program (CMDA) is also a fantastic opportunity to teach mathematics in a new way, emphasizing quantitative skills that have direct applications in today’s real-life, data-oriented jobs.

Finally, the New River Valley is full of outdoors opportunities for hiking, canoeing, and many other activities in the heart of the Appalachian Mountains which I am ready to explore!

 Johann Rudi profile Picture
Assistant Professor Johann Rudi

Assistant Professor Johann Rudi joins the department from the Mathematics and Computer Science Division at the Argonne National Laboratory. 

Professor Rudi's research is interdisciplinary and spans large-scale parallel iterative methods for nonlinear and linear systems, development and implementation of algorithms for high-performance computing (HPC) platforms, computational aspects of inverse problems, and quantification of uncertainties in the inferred parameters.

Immediately after arriving on campus, Professor Rudi has been busy. He received an award from the Academy of Data Science Discovery Fund (ADSDF) for AY 2022-2023. The award will support his research in mathematically modeling the Earth’s mantle convection, a central geophysical process that controls Earth’s geological evolution and the motion of tectonic plates.

I chose to come to Virginia Tech because of the opportunity to work on interdisciplinary research at the intersection of applied mathematics and high-performance computing and to tackle new problems by connecting with domain experts throughout the university.

Jason Legrow profile Picture
Assistant Professor Jason Legrow

Assistant Professor Jason Legrow joins the department from the University of Auckland, where he was a Research Fellow in the Mathematics Department.

Professor LeGrow's research is in the design, analysis, and optimization of isogeny-based cryptographic protocols.

I chose Virginia Tech because I was excited by the research in post-quantum cryptography that is being done in the math department.

Dr. Aidan Murphy Profile Picture
Dr. Aidan Murphy

Visiting Assistant Professor Aidan Murphy is a recent graduate of Virginia Tech!  He graduated this past May with his dissertation,  Codes from norm-trace curves: local recovery and fractional decoding, advised by Dr.Gretchen Matthews.

Professor Murphy's research interest is in the theory of error-correcting codes, with particular focus on algebraic geometry codes and locally recoverable codes.

I've stayed at Virginia Tech to be able to continue doing research with Gretchen L. Matthews, as well as other collaborators here within the algebra group. I'm thankful for the opportunity to finish my open research projects before transitioning to my eventual position at the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Lab, and for the ability to continue teaching in collaboration with the friends I've had throughout my time in graduate school at Virginia Tech.

Dr. Joseph Antonides Profile Picture
Dr. Joseph Antonides

Dr. Joseph Antonides' comes to Virginia Tech as a recent graduate of Ohio State University.  

Dr. Antonides' research concentrates on building psychological models that capture and explain students' mathematical experiences.

I chose to come to Virginia Tech so that I could continue to build my research program under the mentorship of Anderson Norton.

I wanted to take these two years to continue pursuing my existing research, to expand into additional research areas, and to continue thinking deeply about theoretical and conceptual issues related to mathematical thinking and learning.

Andy was an ideal mentor to help me pursue these goals, and I count myself extremely fortunate to benefit from his mentorship and collaboration.

Dr. Fanchi Yan Profile Picture
Dr. Fangchi Yan

Dr Fangchi Yan comes to Virginia Tech from a post doc position at West Virginia University.  

Dr Yan studies partial differential equations (PDEs) that are motivated from the modeling of physical phenomena and real-world problems in general.

At Virginia Tech, I will work with Professor Eric de Sturler and  Professor Shu-Ming Sun.

Dr. Giuseppe Cotardo Profile Picture
Dr. Giuseppe Cotardo

Dr. Giuseppe Cotardo joins the department as a recent graduate of the University College Dublin, Ireland.

Dr. Cotardo's research interest is in algebraic coding theory, with a focus on algebra, geometry, combinatorics, and their applications to the invariant theory of codes endowed with the rank metric.

The main reason why I decided to join Virginia Tech for my postdoc was to work together with Professor Matthews, a prominent expert in the applications of algebraic geometry to coding theory and cryptography, and her team (Applied Algebra Research Group - AARG).

My choice was also motivated by the fact that Virginia Tech is an institution highly committed to research and that the Department of Mathematics at Virginia Tech provides an interdisciplinary environment with experts in different areas of mathematics.

I believe that Virginia Tech is ideal place to broaden my research interests and develop into a well-rounded scientist.

Photo of Weihong XU
Weihong Xu

Weihong Xu joins the department as a recent graduate from Rutgers University.

Dr. Weihong Xu studies combinatorial algebraic geometry, especially quantum Schubert calculus and questions concerning generalized flag varieties. 

Paul Jones Profile Picture
Instructor Paul Jones

Dr. Paul Jones joins the department from Christ Covenant School in Winterville North Carolina where he was the Head of School.

I chose to come to Virginia Tech because of the people I met during the interview process.  I got a strong sense from them that this is a place I could not just come and fit in, but thrive as well.  As I was considering my options, Virginia Tech was the clear choice as to where I wanted to be.

Marcie Tiraphatna Profile Picture
Instructor Marcie Tiraphatna

Instructor Marcie Tiraphatna is from Virginia Tech  where she has been a graduate students in the Mathematics Department studying under Dr. Johnson

Ms. Tiraphatna currently teaches undergraduate math courses. She also serves as a faculty advisor for the Association for Women in Mathematics (VT Chapter).

While I was a graduate student here at Virginia Tech, I had the opportunity to teach a few undergraduate math courses. I had a great time working with my fellow instructors and course coordinators, and I'm grateful to be able to continue teaching the students here.

Dr. Cvitanov's PhD is in Number theory, specifically Iwasawa Theory. Much of his work is concerned with non-Archimedean linear algebra.