Department of Mathematics and Philosophy

Spring 2017 Conference

66th Annual Western Illinois University Mathematics Teachers' Conference

Common Core Mathematics: Communicating Ideas and Constructing Arguments

Keynote Speakers 

Our opening speaker will be Melissa Colonis, who is the Presidential Award Winner from Indiana. Our closing speaker will be Adam Poetzel, who has won the Max Beberman Mathematics Educator Award. (More information below.)


Participants can park in the Horrabin Hall Faculty/Staff lot (# 19 on the parking map which you can find on the left menu on this page).  If when you arrive that lot is full, you can also park in the Higgins Faculty/Staff lot (#20) or the Waggoner Hall Faculty/Staff lot (#22) or the Faculty/Staff section of Q Lot (#23).  Parking Services has been informed that we will have visitors that day, so they will not be ticketing. 


Click here for (PDF) Descriptions of the Sessions

WIU Math Conference Schedule 2017

Click here for a Printable (PDF) Schedule

Evaluation of the Conference

At the conclusion of the conference please click here to complete the evaluation form . (

Keynote Speaker Information

Keynote Speaker: Melissa Colonis

Melissa ColonisDr. Melissa Colonis is an Algebra I and AP Calculus Instructor at Lafayette Jefferson High School. She has earned a bachelor’s degree (1989) and PhD in Mathematics Education (2011) from Purdue University. She holds a masters degree (1994) from Santa Clara University. In addition to being a National Board Certified Teacher in Early Adolescence Mathematics, Melissa was awarded the 2013 Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching. As a result she was invited to Washington D.C. where she and other award winning teachers had the opportunity to meet President Barack Obama.

Since 1989, she has taught in public and private elementary schools in the Silicon Valley area of California; in public middle schools in California and Indiana; and public high school in Lafayette, Indiana. She has also taught mathematics methods courses at Purdue University, Indiana University—Kokomo, and IUPUI.


Closing Speaker:  Adam Poetzel

Adam PoetzelAdam Poetzel serves as a Clinical Assistant Professor in mathematics education at the University of Illinois. He joined the Curriculum and Instruction faculty in the fall of 2007 after teaching mathematics at Champaign Central High School for ten years. Adam’s instructional focus is on the preparation and training of pre-service mathematics teachers to effectively teach diverse K-12 students.  Currently, he teaches a variety of methods courses for both undergraduate and graduate candidates including courses that examine the role of technology in today’s mathematics classrooms.  He has received the ICTM Max Beberman Mathematics Educator Award and the University of Illinois campus award for excellence in undergraduate teaching.  During his time as a UIUC faculty member, he has written several publications for NCTM’s Mathematics Teacher magazine, been a featured speaker at NCTM annual and regional conferences, served on the ICTM board of directors, and remains actively involved in several grants focused on the professional development of in-service mathematics teachers.