Media Release – June 22, 2021
Canadian Mathematical Society

Joseph Khoury Receives the 2021 Adrien Pouliot Award

OTTAWA – The Canadian Mathematical Society (CMS) is pleased to announce that Dr. Joseph Khoury (University of Ottawa) is the recipient of the 2021 Adrien Pouliot Award in recognition of his outstanding contributions to mathematics education. The award will be presented at the 2021 CMS Winter Meeting.

Dr. Joseph Khoury has taught at the University of Ottawa for over 20 years. Since 2001, he has held the title of Coordinator of the Math Help Centre in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics. He received his B.Sc. (Hons.) from the Lebanese University in Beirut and his Ph.D. from the University of Ottawa in 2001. His mathematical research has been in the fields of Commutative Algebra and Algebraic Geometry with a special interest in Ga-actions on affine spaces.

Over the last two decades, Joseph has worked tirelessly to promote mathematics and mathematics education at the University of Ottawa, within the local community, and on the national level. An extremely talented and dedicated teacher, Joseph was also awarded the 2020 Canadian Mathematical Society’s Excellence in Teaching Award and the 2017 Graham Wright Award for Distinguished Service. Beyond the classroom, Joseph has produced a wealth of resources for both students and colleagues alike. Dr. Paul-Eugene Parent, chair of University of Ottawa’s Department of Mathematics and Statistics praised Dr. Khoury’s dedication and said,

He goes beyond the course curriculum to give students a chance to explore further and to be inspired. For example, he created the webpage called “Linear Algebra close to Earth” to accompany our core first course in Linear Algebra. The course has a reputation on campus to be dry and very theoretical. The wealth of applications he included on the page became an important source for inspiration for students following the course. It was even followed by students and instructors abroad.

His efforts to help students learn transcend the discipline. In fact, his 2011 student guide to success in Mathematics, which tackled both social and academic aspects of success, has become widely viewed across the University of Ottawa’s campus as a “passport” to success in math courses.

Joseph’s influence reaches far beyond the borders of the University of Ottawa. In 2001, he co-founded the Math Horizons Day with the goal of educating young students about the importance of mathematics in our world. This program continues today with up to 170 students and teachers from the Outaouais and Kingston regions participating on an annual basis. Moreover, to raise the profile of the event, Joseph invites dignitaries to hand out trophies for schools and seizes the opportunity of media presence to make the case of the importance of math education for youth.

In addition to his highly impactful Math Horizon Days, Joseph is also a frequent speaker at high schools and fairs in the Ottawa area, as well as at the Ontario Association of Math Educators (OAME), the largest assembly of math educators in Canada. His presentations to students focus on the power of mathematics and how the discipline has impacted the technologies that we all rely upon each day. His presentations to teachers focus on extracurricular activities that they can use to inspire and motivate their own students.

In addition to being the CMS math camps program coordinator, Joseph organizes a CMS math camp on campus of the University of Ottawa for more than two decades now. This is the largest Math camp in the country in terms of number of participants, the duration, and the scope of activities. He works tirelessly months before the camp to secure lecturers, staff, funding, material, and every other logistical aspect. The camp runs bilingually.

Joseph has also played a diverse and very significant role in promoting mathematics at the national level. Amongst his many valuable contributions, Joseph has served multiple terms as the Chair of the Canadian Mathematical Society’s Education Committee and the Chair of its bilingualism committee. He leveraged his considerable experience gained in organizing highly successful math camps in Eastern Ontario to guide him as the Society’s national coordinator of nearly two dozen camps held annually across all regions of the country. In addition, Joseph has brought a strong voice in support of mathematics to the Prime Minister Awards in STEM education, having lobbied hard to have similar recognition for teachers at the college and undergraduate levels.  He served on the committee for reforming the National Museum of Science and Technology, fostering a plan to include a temporary exhibit highlighting Canadian mathematics in the new museum. He was also a member of the national focus group to enhance the image of mathematics in Canada.

In addition, Joseph co-authored of  The Mathematics that power our world, How is it made? and Jim Totten’s Problems of the week : two books dedicated to the beauty of Mathematics and the central role in plays in our modern society.

For his unwavering dedication to our discipline, Dr. Joseph Khoury is a most deserving recipient of this year’s Adrien Pouliot Award.

About the Adrien Pouliot Award

The Adrien Pouliot Award was inaugurated to recognize individuals who have made significant and sustained contributions to mathematics education in Canada. The award, the first of which was presented in 1995, is named after the second president of the CMS, Adrien Pouliot. Pouliot was a Professor at Laval University and was described as a world-class ambassador for science and mathematics and a great educator.

About the Canadian Mathematical Society (CMS)

Founded in 1945, the CMS is the main national organization whose goal is to promote and advance the discovery, learning and application of mathematics. The Society’s activities cover the whole spectrum of mathematics including scientific meetings, publications, grants, math camps and national and international mathematics competitions, as well as awards and prizes that recognize outstanding achievements.

For more information, please contact:

Dr. Javad Mashreghi
Canadian Mathematical Society
or Dr. Brian Forrest (Waterloo)
Chair, CMS Education Committee
Canadian Mathematical Society