By: Josh Stahl
Dr. Dena Morton has been teaching at Xavier for over 14 years and she recently obtained full professor status. Morton is from Buffalo, N.Y., and she took her graduate classes at Johns Hopkins University, majoring in mathematics. She is married to Jack Morton with three girls between the ages of four and 10.
Morton teaches upper-level pure mathematics classes, such as abstract algebra. She also teaches a math class for non-math majors that, according to Morton, showcases the beauty of mathematics. She enjoys listening to modern, top 40 music and classical music, and her favorite color is blue.
Morton’s favorite part of teaching at Xavier is getting to know the students and watch them experience mathematics. Morton said she was not sure how she decided to become a professor. She said, “I don’t know that I ever did choose it. It’s really just what I’ve always wanted to do. I count myself lucky because I really love my job.” Her father was a mathematician, and she grew up appreciating math.
Morton has some advice for her students. “Students really need to make sure they understand the concepts, and work hard on their homework to make sure that it works out properly. If you’re struggling in any of your classes, go to your professors. That’s what we’re here for: to ensure that you’re doing well in class and understanding the subject matter.”
Morton used to be an advisor for the math club, but she has recently been unable to be involved because of her three young daughters. She “would love to get back into it in a year or two when my youngest gets a little older.”
Morton says that truly loves her students and enjoys showing them how mathematics can be useful in all aspects of life. To sum it up, Dr. Morton says “Math is beautiful, and I want all of my students to see that, too.”