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Teacher Wanna-Be

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Indicium Physicus
Staff member
Jan 26, 2012
My name is Adrian Keister, and I have heard nearly every joke possible about my last name.

When I was about 8 years old, I watched a video that had a guy in it who had 3 earned Ph.D.'s. On the way home, I asked my mother, "If I wanted to get 3 Ph.D.'s, should I get them all at once or one at a time?"

When I was 14 years old, I received for my birthday a mug that said, "I have a B.A., and an M.A., and a Ph.D. All I need now is a good J.O.B."

I got my B.S. in Applied Physics/Computer Hardware and Software Systems and Mathematics at Grove City College in PA, USA, on May 19, 2001. Mom always said never to take time off during academic studies, because you'll find it hard to go back. So I started graduate school at Virginia Tech on May 21, 2001. I got my M.S. in Mathematical Physics in 2004, and my Ph.D. in Mathematical Physics in 2007. My dissertation was on solitons in fiber optic cables, particularly the mathematics of when the eigenvalues of the Manakov system exist, which relates directly to when solitons exist. It was an entirely theoretical dissertation, rounding up a mostly theoretical education.

Ever since then I've worked in labs or companies doing experimental work, which has been quite a shift. These days I do a lot of LabVIEW programming - that's a full-blown computer programming language that is especially good at talking to hardware. Right now I do systems engineering for a fuel cell company.

Eventually (3 or 4 years, say), I would like to teach math and physics, and maybe logic, in a classical Christian school. Working in industry has had two goals: 1. Working to support my habit of teaching, and 2. Giving me some REAL real-world examples of mathematical problem-solving. So when students ask, "What do you use straight lines for?", (Amazing how many prophets you have in classrooms, isn't it? They KNOW they'll NEVER need to know X.) I can reply, "Well, one way you can use straight lines is to convert a 4-20 mA pressure transducer's output into engineering units such as psig. You use a pressure standard, and then get current data for each pressure point, fit a straight line to the results, and the slope and offset are what you need."

Chris L T521 and Jameson, the site owners, have been so kind as to let me be an administrator on MHB. I view myself as a day-to-day admin, mostly working inside the existing framework, instead of changing it.

Welcome to MHB!


Jan 28, 2012
Amazing how many prophets you have in classrooms, isn't it? They KNOW they'll NEVER need to know X.
Props for the above. Well said. (Yes)