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Andrew Engelward

Assistant Dean of Academic Programs at Harvard Extension School

  • Education

    PhD, Harvard University

Andy Engelward

Why I teach Mathematics for Teaching at Harvard Extension School

Math has been a passion of mine since childhood. My parents and grandparents were all mathematicians, and I was raised in a household surrounded by math, from math puzzle books, Rubik’s cubes, to mathematical art (there is such a thing!) Teaching math was basically the family business, and ever since I started tutoring fellow students in middle school, I realized that I wanted teaching to be a central part of my career.

After teaching calculus in the Harvard Math Department for the better part of a decade, I was invited to teach a precalculus class for the Extension School. Going from teaching undergraduate students who usually were taking a math class just because it was required, to teaching adult students in the Extension School who were choosing to spend their time and energy taking a math class even if it wasn’t required, was incredibly refreshing.

After helping to create the Math for Teaching program in the early 2000’s I have had the fortune of teaching teachers, which has meant that I’m not only working with people who enjoy learning math, but who love to teach it to others as well. Although I spend a fair amount of my time helping to oversee many other programs at HES as the Assistant Dean of Academic Programs, it is the enjoyment I get from introducing mathematical ideas in the classroom that keeps me energized. Ponder the number Pi, amazing! What does a cube look like in the fourth dimension? Try cutting a Moebius strip in half – incredible! I look forward to sharing the magic of mathematics with as many people as possible, and am continually thankful to be able to do this at Harvard.

More about Andrew

After receiving an undergraduate degree in mathematics from Yale, Engelward taught math at the Noble and Greenough school in Dedham Massachusetts, and worked for five years as a business consultant at The Monitor Company during the 1990s. Engelward then completed a doctorate in mathematics at Harvard in number theory, receiving his PhD in 1999.

From 1999 through 2005, Engelward taught in the Math Department, in addition to teaching for the Extension School. In 2005, Engelward was appointed Director of the newly formed Math for Teaching program offered by HES. After serving as a program director for over a decade, Engelward was then promoted to Assistant Dean of Academic Programs, helping to oversee ALM programs in Liberal Arts, Biotechnology, Information Technology, as well as Math for Teaching.

Engelward founded the Boston Math Teachers’ Circle in 2012, and has served on Harvard’s Institutional Review Board since 2017. Working with students has always been central to Engelward’s professional career, and he especially enjoys teaching a Mathematical Foundations course, and the Math for Teaching Capstone course each year.