"Them good ol' boys were teaching CTY
Sayin' 'This'll be the way that I die. . .'"
--Don McLean, as paraphrased by Mark Rubin
CTY stands for The Center for the Advancement of Academically
Talented Youth, formerly known as OTID (The Office for Talent
Identification and Development), now part of IAAY (Institute for the
Academic Advancement of Youth), which gives you a good idea why I and a
lot of other people still call it CTY.
Yes, but what is it?
When people ask me what CTY actually is, I tell them "It's a
summer school for gifted children, run by Johns Hopkins University, with
sites all around the country. I teach math at a site in Lancaster,
Pennsylvania." What I don't tell them is that it's a hell of a lot of fun
and I taught there almost every year between 1986-96. Which sounds like a
long time, but nowhere as long as
Mike Brandstein. I doubt I'll ever have taught there as long as Mike.
I'll never be as old as Mike, either, but that's another story.
Slightly more than you wanted to know
We of the Thundering Herd have many time-honored traditions, which
is not to say that they are honorable, but have stood the test of time.
Among these are the Scavenger Hunt, the Tri-Annual Pizza Eating Contest,
and the Sumo Tournament. These comprise the coveted Triple Crown of the
Thundering Herd. In recent years, the Scavenger Hunt has been replaced with
the Rochambeau (Rock, Scissors, Paper) tournament. No one has yet won all
three in the same year, although
Mark Lucianovic has come close. We've also added the CTY Wedding Trophy,
to be presented to each couple as they get married. As with all of our
trophies, if you get your name on the trophy three times, it's officially
retired and you get to keep it permanently.
For Further Reading
If you're looking to find out more about CTY, there's lots of stuff
on the Web. There's the official
CTY Home Page, Matthew
Belmonte's CTY Etc. pages,
and last but not least, the
If you're interested in some teaching tips, you can check out my version
of the precalc instructor's manual. Also look at
Math Coordinator's Handbook. And hey, if you're one of my former
students, please write to me, I'd love to
hear from you and find out how you're doing.
A related resource is
SET (Study of Exceptional Talent), also under the auspices of Johns
Hopkins University. This organization provides general resources and
support to gifted students. It melded recently with IAAY to form IAAY-SET, which
if you ask me sounds like some sort of government conspiracy researched on the
X-Files. But that's a good example of why people have stopped asking my opinion.
What is this background?
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last updated: 2/23/00