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Gifted Mathematician Honored At NJIT Convocation

Tue, 09/27/2011 - 10:23am
EurekAlert

Victor Matveev, an associate professor in the department of mathematical sciences in NJIT's College of Science and Liberal Arts, has received the honor of "Excellence in Upper Division Undergraduate Instruction" at NJIT's University Convocation. Convocation at NJIT traditionally honors select faculty and staff members who have demonstrated the highest level of excellence over a sustained period.

Matveev's research focuses on computational neuroscience, biophysical modeling and numerical simulation of synaptic function and its mechanisms. He uses analytical methods and computational techniques, from stochastic modeling to numerical solution of partial and ordinary differential equations. He typically collaborates with experimental neurophysiologists, developing models to explain and fit the experimental data.

His current projects include the study of the mechanisms of short-term synaptic facilitation and other calcium-dependent processes involved in neurotransmitter secretion, as well as the modeling of intracellular calcium diffusion and buffering. He is also investigating the activity of synaptically coupled neuronal circuits, exploring the influence of synaptic properties on network behavior.

To facilitate his research, Matveev has been developing a software application he's dubbed the "Calcium Calculator." The software is designed for solving the reaction-diffusion equation arising in the study of intracellular calcium dynamics, and is used by several research laboratories throughout the world in their work on calcium-dependent cell processes.

Matveev is considered by his peers and students to be one of the most gifted and dedicated instructors in the mathematical sciences department, where he has taught since 2003. His teaching style has received glowing reviews from his students, including near perfect teaching evaluations. They commend him for the detailed and well-organized manner in which he presents the material, including a homepage for each course.

He has also played a central role in curricular development within the department. Students give him high praise for his willingness to spend the extra time to explain difficult concepts. They appreciate the steady pace he establishes with weekly quizzes and assignments. His detailed feedback on these exercises keeps everyone on the same page. He also has mentored fifteen undergraduate students as part of a National Science Foundation grant to train undergraduate students in mathematics and biology.

Matveev is a prior recipient of the CSLA Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching, attesting to his standing within his college. This most recent award extends that recognition to the level of the university. For more information about Matveev, please visit http://math.njit.edu/people/matveev.php.

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