Campus News

Breckinridge Center Hosts Statisticians

Story posted July 03, 2002

On June 29-July 2 Bowdoin's Breckinridge Center in York hosted an annual retreat of The Statistics in the Liberal Arts Workshop (SLAW). SLAW comprises a group of statisticians from selective liberal arts colleges, who organized in 1987 to consider the place of statistics within the liberal arts curriculum and the role of a statistician at a liberal arts college. Toward these considerations, SLAW has implemented a variety of projects at the national level including conference sessions, journal articles, short courses, outreach projects for isolated statisticians, and presentations.

SLAW's members have become recognized leaders in statistics education through work in projects such as AP statistics, the Mathematical Association of America's (MAA's) STATS Project (to introduce college mathematicians to modern statistics pedagogy), the American Statistical Association's (ASA's) Quantitative Literacy Project (for K-12 infusion of quantitative thinking), and through numerous leadership positions within the ASA and the MAA. Members have also contributed through innovative courses or books that have benefited from discussions at SLAW. SLAW is funded by the ExxonMobil Foundation.

SLAW has met at Breckinridge since 1990 and reports that the center provides an ideal setting for SLAW's annual, contemplative, three-day meetings. The small gathering of ten to twelve members hold their main discussions in the Green Room, but good ideas can just as easily arise during informal interactions on the terrace, walking the grounds, or sitting by the pool.

The Breckinridge Center has had the opportunity to expand its calendar for this year, and will be available for bookings all summer, and through Thanksgiving. Next summer the facility will return to its regular schedule of April 1 through July 25, and September 17 through Thanksgiving.

More on the Breckinridge Center

The Breckinridge Public Affairs Center is located on the tidal York River at 201 U.S. Route One in York. Owned and operated by Bowdoin College, the center is used for classes, seminars, and meetings of educational, cultural, and civic groups. Business and professional organizations also use the facility for planning sessions and staff development activities.

The 23-acre estate includes a 25-room main house, a clay tennis court, and a 110-foot circular saltwater swimming pool. River House, which accommodates 19 overnight guests, was designed by Guy Lowell in 1905, and is on the National Register of Historic Places. The estate was given to Bowdoin in 1974 by Mary Marvin Breckinridge Patterson, whose husband was the Honorable Jefferson Patterson of St. Leonard, Md. The estate is named in honor of Mrs. Patterson's family.

Read more about the Breckinridge Center, including its history, by clicking here:

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