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The Reid Lecture Series

The Reid Lecture Series is an annual public lecture geared toward showing a broad audience the beauty of mathematics  It is hosted each March by the CSUSM Department of Mathematics.  The event is open to the local and campus communities, including engaged high school and college students from other campuses and interested community members.

The Reid Lecture was established in 2015 and has continued with support from Founding Library Dean and Librarian Emerita Marion Reid and Founding Faculty Member and Professor Emeritus K. Brooks Reid.

The 2019 Reid Lecture Series Presents: "Power in Numbers: Unveiling Mathematical Hidden Figures" by Talithia Williams

The movie “Hidden Figures” brought visibility to the lives of African American women who served as NASA “human computers” in the 1960s, women who dreamed the impossible in a field where their presence was lacking.  Meeting the demands of a 21st century STEM workforce requires that we look beyond traditional talent pools to recruit and train individuals typically underrepresented in math, science and engineering.

During this talk, Dr. Williams will discuss her personal journey as a woman of color in STEM and examine current benchmarks shown to be effective in retaining underrepresented students in STEM.  Using data to capture the many facets of the problem, she will highlight best practices embraced by institutions that have had success in these areas. This talk will explore the disruptive innovation used to motivate girls of color to embrace mathematics and Data Science, and envision themselves as future STEM leaders.  By challenging the status quo, we allow for ongoing innovative contributions to our society and the world in general.  


  • 2015: The inaugural Reid Lecture given by Professor Ron Graham, UC San Diego Department of Mathematics and Computer Science.
  • 2016: Professor Francis Su, Harvey Mudd College, Department of Mathematics.
  • 2017:  Professor Alice Silverberg, Department of Mathematics and Computer Science, UC Irvine.
  • 2018:  Professor William Dunham, Mathematical Historian, Distinguished Author, and Research Associate in Mathematics at Bryn Mawr.