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Celebrate Pi With Pie!

March 9 Marks UHD’s Inaugural ‘All Things π’ Event


By Laura Wagner

Pi lovers, rejoice! (Also pie lovers.) all things pi

There’s now an alternative to National Pi (π) Day right here on the UHD campus: All Things π. Scheduled for March 9 from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. in Academic Building A300, Houston and White Oak Rooms, the event will feature fun, games, a countdown to pi o’clock (3:14 p.m.)—and yes, pie, from Houston’s very own House of Pies. 

National π Day, a celebration of the irrational number pi, is officially celebrated on March 14, which typically falls during UHD’s Spring Break. This event will fill that gap for Gators. 

“All Things π will encourage students to actively participate in learning about pi in ways that make it enjoyable,” said Susan Beane, Lecturer in the Department of Mathematics & Statistics and mastermind behind the event. “Through a display of amazing facts, history, knowledge-providing activities, and games, we hope to show students how much fun it is to learn about pi.”

Susan Beane-ed

Beane first came up with the idea while reading a book called The Joy of Pi. “I mentioned to the Department Chair Dr. Ryan Pepper that we should create our own pi celebration, since no one is on campus for National π Day,” she recalled. 

Pepper agreed with Beane that a custom celebration was in order for such an essential component of math and science, so Beane formed a planning team with Assistant Chair and Professor of Mathematics Dr. Timothy Redl and Lecturers Vien Nguyen, Bonnie Blumberg, and Joyce Hallaway. Together, the group baked up the idea for All Things π.

Fruit pies will be on hand as well as ice cream and cotton candy, plus a host of games and activities designed to bring pi to life for attendees. Beane hopes the event will raise awareness with students of the “historical wonders of pi” as well as provide networking opportunities.

“This is a chance for students to interact in a relaxed, informal setting with the faculty in the Department of Mathematics & Statistics and the College of Sciences & Technology, as well as with members of the UHD Math Club,” Beane noted. 

Her goal is for students to walk away from All Things π having learned something about the beauty and utility of this mysterious number. She believes that despite its age, pi never goes out of style, citing the opinion of pi experts Lennart Berggren, Jonathan M. Borwein, and Peter Borwein: “The computation of π is virtually the only topic from the most ancient stratum of mathematics that is still of serious interest to modern mathematical research.” iStock-1126871629

Of course, there’s always the debate as to whether pi’s popularity stems from its association with a mouthwatering dessert. Now that’s a conversation fit for the All Things π event.

For more information on All Things π, contact Susan Beane at ms@uhd.edu  or  713.221.8012.

About the University of Houston-Downtown

The University of Houston-Downtown (UHD) is the second-largest university in Houston and has served the educational needs of the nation’s fourth-largest city since 1974. As one of four distinct public universities in the University of Houston System, UHD is a comprehensive, four-year university led by President Loren J. Blanchard. Annually, UHD educates approximately 14,000 students, boasts more than 66,000 alumni, and offers 45 bachelor’s degrees, 12 master’s degrees, and 19 online programs within four colleges: Marilyn Davies College of Business, College of Humanities and Social Sciences, College of Public Service, and College of Sciences and Technology. UHD has one of the lowest tuition rates in Texas.

U.S. News and World Report ranked UHD among the nation’s Best Online Bachelor’s Programs for Applied Administration and Best Online Master’s Programs in Criminal Justice, as well as a Top Performer in Social Mobility. The Wall Street Journal/College Pulse ranked UHD one of the best colleges in the U.S. for its 2024 rankings, with notable distinctions: No. 1 for diversity (tied) and No. 3 for student experience. The University is designated as a Hispanic-Serving Institution, a Minority-Serving Institution, and a Military Friendly School. For more information on the University of Houston-Downtown, visit uhd.edu.