Arts & Sciences’ Fab 4 for 2022


How a lot had been UW Arts & Sciences undergrads capable of accomplish through the pandemic? Rather a lot, as demonstrated by the 4 recipients of the 2022 Arts & Sciences Dean’s Medal: Fran Herr, Darby Sherwood, Abigail Heath, and Piper Coyner.  Throughout their time on the UW, the 2022 honorees translated math ideas into choreography, honed their playwriting expertise, explored the affect of race on training, researched journals from Ottoman Iraq, and way more.

Annually, the Dean’s Medal honors one graduating senior from every of the Faculty’s 4 divisions — Arts, Humanities, Pure Sciences, and Social Sciences — primarily based on educational efficiency and nominations from college.  The Faculty additionally honors graduate college students with its Arts & Sciences Graduate Medal; the 2022 graduate medalists are highlighted within the Awards & Honors part of the publication.

Fran Herr, Dean’s Medal within the Pure Sciences
Darby Sherwood, Dean’s Medal within the Arts
Abigail Heath, Dean’s Medal within the Social Sciences
Piper Coyner, Dean’s Medal within the Humanities


Fran Herr

Dean’s Medal within the Pure Sciences
BS, Arithmetic
BA, Dance

Fran Herr is captivated with arithmetic and dance. She pursued each on the UW and located methods to creatively join the seemingly disparate pursuits.

Fran Herr, Dean's Medalist in the Natural Sciences
Fran Herr

Herr’s immersion in arithmetic included 5 analysis tasks, together with participation within the Division of Arithmetic’ Washington Experimental Math Lab and a summer time undertaking at Texas State College by way of the Nationwide Science Basis’s Analysis Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) program.

“Fran comes up with nice, authentic concepts that exhibit a deep understanding of what she is considering,” says Gaku Liu, assistant professor of arithmetic, who served as mentor for Herr’s senior thesis undertaking. “She not solely has the mental means to be an amazing researcher, but in addition the social expertise and fervour to be a frontrunner in mathematical outreach and training.”

Herr’s curiosity in outreach led her to create a private YouTube channel that makes use of pictoral explanations to current math ideas to a broader viewers. After posting movies, she gathers suggestions from associates exterior the maths neighborhood to hone her talents as a math communicator. That talent will probably be a lot wanted this fall, when Herr begins a year-long Exponent Fellowship on the Nationwide Museum of Arithmetic, participating guests by answering questions and main excursions.

After which there’s Herr’s love of dance. In her UW dance programs, “Fran’s pleasure in studying is a present to these round her, elevating discussions and prompting deeper pondering,” says Rachael Lincoln, affiliate professor of dance. Herr participated in three Division of Dance performances on movie throughout COVID, and choreographed a piece for the 2022 Dance Majors Live performance utilizing arithmetic — particularly an answer to the Tower of Hanoi puzzle — as her inspiration. The end result, says Lincoln, was “a layered and metaphor-rich dance.

”Throughout her time on the UW, Herr obtained a Barbara Sando Scholarship in Arithmetic. After a 12 months on the Nationwide Museum of Arithmetic, she plans to pursue a PhD in arithmetic.


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