Our Staff

Our Staff

First row, left to right: Amie Lucas, Billie Lozen, AJ Edson, Yvonne Grant, and Betty Phillips

Second row, left to right: Emma Herrera, Jacob Disbro, David Bowers, Amy Ray, Amit Sharma, Merve Nur Kursav, Taren Going, and Tyler Knowles

Not pictured: Shayna Evans

Alden J. Edson, Research Assistant Professor of Mathematics Education

Alden J. Edson, Research Assistant Professor of Mathematics Education

While not working on research and curriculum development for CMP, AJ avidly enjoys science fiction, almost any genre of music, and silly jokes. 

CMP Staff in the Spotlight: AJ Edson, 2014

Amie Lucas, Web Developer/Marketing Director

Amie Lucas, Web Developer, Graphic Designer, Photographer & Digital Media Marketer

Amie’s interest in psychology and art pulled her into the field of web development in 2005. She spent the next few years working in a K-12 environment and freelancing while earning her Bachelor’s degree at Michigan State University. She started working at MSU in 2012 and eventually made her way to the Connected Mathematics Project.

In her spare time, Amie enjoys hiking and camping with her husband, spending time with her pets (three dogs, two cockatiels, and a snake), photographing Michigan, working in her garden, and visiting her property in the U.P.

CMP Staff in the Spotlight: Amie Lucas, 2014

Amit Sharma, Graduate Assistant

Amit Sharma, Graduate Assistant

Amit is coming to CMP from Northern India. He completed his undergrad in Math, Statistics and Ecomonics and his MBA in Human Resources. He joined a Teach for India fellowship and had the opportunity to teach 64 grade III kids in one of the slum schools of Mumbai.

His research interest revolves around inquire based teaching, intrinsic motivation in Math and the role of technology in Math Education.

In his spare time, he enjoys cooking, traveling, and humming songs. He loves listening to sufi music and is trying to learn to play the flute.

CMP Staff in the Spotlight: Amit Sharma, 2016

Amy Ray, Graduate Assistant

Amy Ray, Graduate Assistant

Amy Ray is a fifth-year Ph.D. candidate in the PRIME program at Michigan State University. She previously taught high school mathematics in Fort Worth, Texas before enrolling at MSU. She holds a Master of Education in Secondary Education and a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics from Texas Christian University as well as a Master of Science in Mathematics from MSU. Her research interests relate to mathematics assessments, broadly, with a specific focus on K-12 teachers’ use of written mathematics assessment tasks. Specific to her work with CMP, Amy is interested in CMP teachers' use of formative assessment as a teaching practice and student work embedded into CMP materials as unique assessment opportunities.

In her spare time, Amy enjoys reading, playing the piano and clarinet, and baking. 

CMP Staff in the Spotlight: Amy Ray, 2014

David Bowers, Graduate Assistant

David Bowers, Graduate Assistant

David Bowers comes to CMP from Ohio State University with a master's in Mathematics. He has a longstanding love of both mathematics and education.

David worked as a high school math teacher in Columbus City Schools for several years before deciding to pursue an advanced degree. He earned a Master's degree in math and has now found himself a home here at MSU as a Doctoral student. 

In his spare time, David loves hiking and cooking with his wife. 

CMP Staff in the Spotlight: David Bowers, 2016

Elizabeth "Billie" Lozen, Consortium Coordinator

Elizabeth "Billie" Lozen, Consortium Coordinator

Billie has a long history with CMP. Her first exposure to CMP was as a middle school student in Portland, Michigan. She was one of the many students to engage in the CMPI pilot, which later led her to an assignment as a CMP Undergraduate Assistant. Since her days as a CMP Undergraduate Assistant, she has taught 8th grade CMP and supported the implementation of CMP school-wide as a middle school principal. In 2015, Billie rejoined the Wells Hall staff as a full-time Consortium Coordinator. 

Billie and her husband, Adam, enjoy traveling, boating, sunshine and their young children, Julian (5) and Wyndsor (3).

CMP Staff in the Spotlight: Billie Lozen, 2015

Elizabeth Difanis Phillips, Author

Elizabeth Difanis Phillips, CMP Author and Senior Academic Specialist in Program in Mathematics Education and Department of Mathematics

When Betty Phillips joined the Department of Mathematics at Michigan State University in the 1970s, she developed an interest in the teaching and learning of algebra. This interest led her to a search for a curriculum that would change the mathematical experiences for both students and teachers.

Her early work, along with her colleagues, involved writing five exemplary mathematics units for the Middle Grades Mathematics Project (MGMP). These efforts lead the foundation for the development of CMP.

In her spare time, Betty enjoys time spent with her family and friends, particularly with her seven grandchildren. Gardening, yoga, Pilates, exercising, cooking, reading, going to the theater or concerts, and traveling are sandwiched into the remaining time. Most of all, she loves being at her cottage where she can recharge her soul, energy, and vision.

CMP Staff in the Spotlight: Elizabeth Phillips, 2014

Emma Herrera, Undergraduate Assistant

Emma Herrera, Undergraduate Assistant

Emma Herrera is a sophomore studying mathematics with a minor in actuarial science. She hopes to become an actuary and maybe go into teaching.

Emma is heavily involved with YoungLife, serving as a leader/mentor to middle school students. She loves Starbucks and love to go to the movie theaters. Most importantly she loves to play volleyball, especially with her two sisters.

CMP Staff in the Spotlight: Emma Herrera, 2017

Glenda Lappan, Author

Glenda Lappan, Author

Glenda joined MSU as an assistant mathematics professor in 1965. After teaching mathematics and mathematics education for 10 years, she turned her attention to mathematics curriculum research.

With her colleagues, Lappan developed the Connected Mathematics Project (CMP). Glenda's research and development interests are in the connected areas of students' learning of mathematics and mathematics teacher professional growth and change at the middle and secondary levels.

Glenda retired in the Spring of 2014, and now spends her time with her family.

CMP Staff in the Spotlight: Glenda Lappan, 2014

Jacob Disbro, Undergraduate Assistant

Jacob Disbro, Undergraduate Assistant

Jacob Disbro joined CMP in October 2015. He is a Freshmen at Michigan State University, studying Kinesiology with a minor in Sales Leadership. 

In his spare time, Jacob enjoys working out, hanging out with friends, and watching movies.

CMP Staff in the Spotlight: Jacob Disbro, 2015

Merve Nur Kursav, Graduate Assistant

Merve Nur Kursav, Graduate Assistant

Merve comes to CMP from the University of Georgia where she received her M.A as a Fulbright Scholar.

Her research interests are centered around investigating the role of innovative methods in teaching, learning, students' thinking, and enhancement and development of curriculum materials.

In her spare time, Merve enjoys traveling, going to live music, and writing poems.

CMP Staff in the Spotlight: Merve Nur Kursa, 2017

Shayna Evans, Undergraduate Assistant

Shayna Evans, Undergraduate Assistant

Shayna joined the CMP team in September 2014. She is an undergraduate student at Michigan State University and is studying Applied Engineering Sciences (AES) with a concentration in Supply Chain Management.  She is also the President of her dormitory's hall government.

Shayna enjoys playing volleyball, dancing, attending Spartan football games, traveling, helping and inspiring others. She loves math and solving complex problems.

CMP Staff in the Spotlight: Shayna Evans, 2015

Susan Friel, Author

Susan Friel, Author

Susan Friel is a Professor of Mathematics Education at UNC-Chapel Hill. A former elementary and middle grades classroom teacher, Susan teaches in diverse programs. She is particularly interested in the design of effective mathematics/mathematics education curricula. 

When not immersed in math stuff, Susan likes to garden. She had a rather large vegetable garden this past summer with lots of cucumbers, acorn squash, zucchini, tomatoes, kale, chard, and green beans. She also likes to dance - particularly ballroom dancing. And she and her husband enjoy their grand kids (Jalin, Kaila (Hawaii) and Eli, Coop (NC)) and their animals - Jesse (dog), Jasmine and Jake (cats) who are not only 'name coordinated – all "Js"' – but also color coordinated - all black and white! 

CMP Staff in the Spotlight: Susan Friel, 2014

Taren Going, Graduate Assistant

Taren Going, Graduate Assistant

First year graduate student, Taren Going's research interest center around how mathematical reasoning is developed in the middle grades. She received her BS degree in physics and math and her MEd in science education.

In her spare time, Taren's favorite thing to do is sleep past 5:00 a.m. (she has two daughters, 3 and 1). She also loves playing the piano and knitting. 

CMP Staff in the Spotlight: Taren Going, 2016

Tyler Knowles, Tech Guru

Tyler knowles, Tech Guru

Tyler Knowles is CMP's in house technologist specialist.

Tyler has a BA in Communication Arts, Radio, TV and Film from University of Wisconsin, Madison. From there, he lived in Los Angeles for ten years, working primarily in film and television. 

For seven years, he worked as a Creative at Apple and has extensive knowledge of Apple software and hardware as well as video editting and graphic design software. 

Tyler enjoys going to movies, live music, architecture, and design. 

CMP Staff in the Spotlight: Tyler Knowles, 2016

Yvonne Grant, Collaborating Teacher and Professional Development Assistant

Yvonne Grant, Collaborating Teacher and Professional Development Assistant

Yvonne is a middle school mathematics teacher from Portland, MIchigan. She is currently out of the classroom working as a professional development coordinator and teacher in residence at CMP.

Yvonne has worked on all aspects of the development, implementation, and professional development of the CMP curriculum, from the beginning in 1991. She also worked as a mathematics instructional coach for two years. 

When not working, Yvonne enjoys her family with two sons who diminate her time. She hopes to retire one day in a house overlooking the water.

CMP Staff in the Spotlight: Yvonne Grant, 2014