Why do we hold the Annual Kenneth C. Schraut Memorial Lecture?

This lecture is held each year in honor of Dr. Kenneth C. Schraut. It is funded entirely from alumni contributions.

Kenneth Charles Schraut was a professor of mathematics at the University of Dayton for over 50 years. He was born in Hillsboro, Illinois, on May 19, 1913 and received his bachelor's degree in mathematics in 1936 from the University of Illinois. He earned both a master's degree (1938) and a Ph.D. (1940) from the University of Cincinnati.

He taught full-time at UD from 1940- to 1978 and continued teaching part-time from 1978 to 1993. Schraut was chair of the Department of Mathematics from 1954 to 1970 and founded a summer institute for high school mathematics teachers on campus. He taught math classes to business and pre-medical students, along with algebra, trigonometry, calculus, and advanced engineering mathematics. Schraut established the UD chapter of Pi Mu Epsilon (National Mathematics Honor Society) and was an advisor for premedical students.

Among his most notable accomplishments was his pioneering work with what became the University of Dayton Research Institute. In 1949, Schraut and ten students received a $10,200 contract from Wright-Patterson Air Force Base (WPAFB) to analyze or "reduce" aircraft flight load data. This project, which became known as Project Globe, was followed by a second data reduction contract for $25,000. During 1951-1952, Dr. Schraut directed the expansion of research efforts at UD. In 1952, he began Project Delta, recruiting full-time professional researchers for nuclear weapons effects research. From these beginnings, sponsored research at UD grew to $1 million by 1956 and on September 1 of that year, the University of Dayton Research Institute (UDRI) was formally established.

Dr. Schraut's civic and professional activities included the American Math Society; the Math Association of America; the American Society for Engineering Education, for which he was chairman of the Math Division; the American Association of University Professors; the Metropolitan Dayton Honors Society; and the National Science Foundation Summer Institute, which he directed in 1959 and 1961-1967.

The UD Libraries retains a collection of Dr. Schraut's papers.  Learn more >>

Slate of Schraut Lecturers

2000: Joe Diestel, Kent State University, Sums and series in vector spaces

2001: Richard Schoen, Stanford University, Geometry in two and three dimensions

2002: Paul Campbell, Beloit College, How to keep up with mathematics

2003: Robert Lewand, Goucher College, How not to get lost while on a random walk

2004: Jane Pendergast, University of Iowa, Beyond Reasonable Doubt: The Role of Statistics in Health Research

2005: Patrick Flinn, National Security Agency, Gröbner bases: A Natural Extension of Gaussian Reduction and the Euclidean Algorithm

2006: Greg Campbell, Federal Drug Administration, The Role of Biostatistics in Medical Devises: Making a Difference in People’s Lives Everyday

2007: William Dunham, Muhlenberg College, An Euler Trifecta

2008: Robert Bolz, Lockheed Martin Corporation, Leadership Founded in Habits of Inquiry and Reflection

2009: Thomas Santner, The Ohio State University, These Aren’t Your Mothers and Fathers Experiments

2010: Eugene Steuerle, The Urban Institute, Every Time I Turn Around There’s Dr. Schraut or You Can’t Take mathematics out of a U.D. Mathematics Major

2011: Jeffrey Diller, University of Notre Dame. Imaginary Numbers, Unsolvable Equations, and Newton’s Method

2012: Lilian Wu, IBM Technology Strategy and Innovation, Creating Macroscopes with Technology and Analytics: New Possibilities in Our Lives – The Important Role of Tommorrow’s Mathematics Professionals

2013: Thomas Bohman, Carnegie Mellon University, Randomness and Pseudorandomness in Combinatorics

2014: Rafe Donahue, BioMimetic Therapeutics, Inc., Data Stories and Pictures: Discovering Lessons and Principles for Statistics and Life

2015: Chikako Mese, Johns Hopkins University, Riemannian Geometry

2016: David Diller, CMDbioscience, A Role for Mathematics in Understanding and Curing Disease?

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