The 3-Minute Interview: John Hamman, 2012 Maryland Professor of the Year

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People,Kate Jacobson

Hamman is a math professor at Montgomery College, and is the chairman of the math department at its Germantown campus. This year he was the recipient of 2012 Maryland Professor of the Year, becoming the sixth professor from the college in the last nine years to receive the award.

How did you get involved in teaching?

Since high school, I have been interested in teaching. I loved working with my peers to help them understand whatever we were learning. I majored in both math and physics and really fell in love with mathematics while taking a history of math class as an undergraduate. Since then, I taught math at the high school level and university level before finding that I really love the community college environment.

How did you come to teach at Montgomery College?

I was teaching at Anne Arundel Community College when a close friend from a professional organization -- the Mathematical Association of America -- invited me to a conference at Montgomery College. He showed me around the school, introduced me to some of his colleagues and encouraged me to apply.

What is your favorite part about teaching?

Working with a student and seeing them grasp a topic that they have been struggling with is my favorite part of teaching.

How did it feel being honored with this award?

I was surprised and deeply honored when I found out I had won this award. ... I have a great deal of respect for all these people and was not confident that my teaching and application were at that level. I owe a lot of my successes in the classroom to my peers.

- Kate Jacobson

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