Amanda holds a Bachelor of Arts in mathematics from Indiana University South Bend and a PhD in mathematics from Boston University. In 2007, she completed a PhD dissertation on the dynamics of networks of inhibitory neurons in the hippocampus. Amanda has published research on iterated matrix maps, and has additional research interests in geometric topology and mathematical origami.
Amanda has been involved in math outreach for many years. She has presented hands-on math activities to a variety of audiences and has organized math fairs, math badge days for Girl Scouts, fractal workshops, and trainings for youth leaders and teachers. She also has experience working with college students as a tutor at the Pearson publishing company's call-in Tutor Center and as a math instructor at the University of Utah and Boston University. Amanda served as a teaching assistant and mentor for undergraduate math majors in the Summer Program for Women in Mathematics. During the 2002-2003 academic year, she and fellow graduate student Joyce Macabea obtained a grant to visit five universities with significant populations of minority students majoring in mathematics to tell the undergraduates there about research, graduate school, and careers in the sciences.
Amanda has been active with the Math Circle movement to connect mathematicians with young students interested in mathematics. Amanda first became involved with Math Circles as an instructor in Bob and Ellen Kaplan's Math Circle program in the Boston area. In November 2006, Amanda accompanied a group of American mathematicians during a trip to Moscow and St. Petersburg to learn about Russian math outreach programs. Amanda regularly co-organizes events for mathematicians and teachers from around the country who are interested in starting their own outreach programs, and has mentored many new Math Circle leaders. Amanda continues to offer Math Circle classes in the South Bend area.
In 2006, Amanda and her husband Dean founded the Riverbend Community Math Center. Amanda continues to serve as the executive director, leading professional development sessions for teachers in our community and hands-on math activities for people of all ages.