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Tara Holm studied at BSM in Spring 1996. She earned a BA in mathematics from Dartmouth College and a PhD in mathematics from MIT. After an NSF Postdoc at University of California, Berkeley and a year at the University of Connecticut, Holm has spent her career at Cornell. She has been Simons Fellow and a von Neuman Fellow at the Institute for Advanced Study, the Oliver Smithies Fellow at Balliol College, Oxford, and a Visiting Fellow at Clare Hall, Cambridge. Holm’s leadership in mathematics and mathematics education is prominent on the national stage, as she has chaired the AMS Committee on Education, is a member of the Board of Governors for Transforming Post-Secondary Education in Mathematics, and is currently the President/CEO of Pro Mathematica Arte.
Holm is an expert in symplectic geometry, the mathematical framework for classical and quantum mechanics. This field has blossomed since the 1980s. Broadly speaking, there are two tools in every symplectic geometer’s toolbox: the momentum map and holomorphic curves. Holm uses these tools to build bridges between symplectic geometry and other fields of mathematics and mathematical physics. She works to identify and quantify the essential features of a symplectic structure and of the symmetries that preserve such a structure.