March 31 Day 388: Feels Like Sabbatical

For my UW Tacoma colleagues, this is the first week of Spring 2021 classes. It is probably the hardest transition between quarters because there is no respite; you just barely submit your final grades for Winter and have to jump into the new term with reckless abandon. I do not envy them.

Me? Why am I not in the same boat? I am lucky to be on a one-quarter sabbatical starting now. Today I spent the entire day thinking math thoughts in preparation for tomorrow’s collaborator check-in. Usually these meetings start with apologies how neither of us had time to make progress outside of our once-a-week 90 minute meeting time. I set out to understand the role of permutations with at least one cycle of odd length in our problem and created an involution that increased my understanding. I then skimmed through some promising papers, to find my involution was known back in 1990. That’s OK. It means I’m finding a path to knowledge that others have used successfully, Let’s see where it leads.

One consequence of sabbatical is an immediate reduction of pandemic stress and pressure. I will write reflections from time to time moving forward, especially items connected to mathematics, humanity, and the pandemic. But I think they will be less frequent.

Big news in Washington State, all adults (defined as 16 years or older) will be eligible for vaccination beginning April 15. This is two weeks ahead of schedule. Now to find an appointment for the son currently at home.

Take care. Stay safe. Get vaccinated.

Cover Photo by Damir Mijailovic from Pexels

Published by Jenny Quinn

Mathematician. Mother. Wife. Leader. I am a professor of mathematics at the University of Washington Tacoma. Mother of Anson and Zachary. Wife to Mark. President of the Mathematical Association of America.

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