I was born and raised in Detroit, Michigan, and I attended Detroit Public Schools for my secondary and most of my elementary education. I then enrolled at Michigan State University, graduating in 2005 with a B.S. with High Honors in Mathematics. My mentor at MSU was Jeanne Wald; she's a noncommutative ring theorist (surprise, surprise).
During my time at MSU, I participated in an alternative spring break program (volunteer work) in Puebla, Mexico in 2002, and a summer study abroad program on Race Relations in South Africa in 2003. I still have great interests in race relations (as it was called then), especially in increasing the participation of underrepresented groups in the mathematical sciences.
After my second year of graduate school at Michigan, I was given the opportunity to complete my research work at the University of Manchester with my thesis adviser, Toby Stafford, who transferred to the UK in Fall 2007. I also returned to Michigan, to work with my other thesis adviser, Karen Smith, and to teach for one semester per year for the last three years of my program. So I moved...a lot! Naturally, this furthered my interest in traveling.
I was an NSF postdoc at the University of Washington in Seattle in 2011-2012; my postdoc mentor was James Zhang. I was also at MSRI for the Spring 2013 program on Noncommutative Algebraic Geometry and Representation Theory; my postdoc mentor there was Sarah Witherspoon. My last postdoctoral position was at MIT, where I was a Moore Instructor in the Math Department in 2012-2015; my postdoc mentor was Pavel Etingof.
My first permanent position was as a tenure-track Assistant Professor in Mathematics at Temple University (2015-2018). Then I became an Associate Professor with tenure in the Mathematics Department at The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. I am currently an Associate Professor (still with tenure) in the Mathematics Department at Rice University... which you know as you're on this page. :)
I live with my husband and two dogs in Houston, Texas.
Professional Journey Talk
Dr. Marjorie Lee Browne Colloquium
Filmed in January 2017
by Walton Specialty Video
at the University of Michigan