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Professor stresses value of math

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Ashley Lipson, professor of law, lectures on the importance of math Tuesday in the Quay Davis Executive Board Room in hope to change people’s negative outlook on the subject. He said people’s lack of knowledge of math could lead them to being victims of financial scams like Ponzi schemes, and that having even a little understanding of math can prevent them from being taken advantage of. / photo by Litsy Tellez

Ramon Morales
Staff Writer 

Ashley Lipson, professor of law, delivered his lecture titled “Math & Physics – Bring Your Fear & Hatred – Leave with a Mystery Guest” on Tuesday before roughly 15 students and faculty members in the Quay Davis Executive Board Room.

The talk focused on the importance of understanding math and its pivotal place in the world. 

“The little that you know about math will give you an advantage over everyone else,” Lipson said.

Lipson explained how throughout history there have been plenty of people who have been masterminds at creating Ponzi schemes in order to scam people and take their money.

Ponzi schemes are when investors trick their targets into giving them money, making them believe they are getting a good return when in reality they are not. 

The public’s lack of understanding of math, Lipson explained, is a main reason Ponzi schemes persist. 

He elaborated on the fact that the schemes have happened to many different people and at many different levels. 

Having a basic understanding of math can help people avoid being lured into a Ponzi scheme or similar fraud, Lipson said.

The need for improved math skill and understanding in our country is greater today than ever, Lipson said, adding that math understanding and ability are on the decline. 

While math may not be of interest to a lot of people, Lipson said he hoped through his lecture to relay its importance.

Throughout his research, Lipson said, he has continued to find the study of math and its critical importance compelling. 

“He’s a real renaissance man,” said Chuck Doskow, dean emeritus and professor of law, who attended the Tuesday talk.

Ramon Morales can be reached at ramon.morales@laverne.edu.

Ramon Morales, a senior communications major with an concentration in public affairs, is a staff writer for the Campus Times.

Litsy Tellez is a junior photography major and a staff photographer for the Campus Times and La Verne Magazine.

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