The math department welcomes Hope Gerson and Jon Hasenbeck

Hope Gerson

Hope Gerson

Hope Gerson is a mathematics educator who is interested in the teaching and learning of calculus, inquiry-based learning, and assessment as a way to increase learning. She earned her undergraduate degree in mathematics from Whittier College in Whittier, CA, her master's degree in mathematics from the University of Iowa, and her Ph.D. in mathematics education from the University of New Hampshire. Before coming to Grand Valley, Hope was an Assistant Professor of Mathematics Education at Brigham Young University.

Hope first became interested in mathematics education when she served as a teaching assistant in graduate school. It was there that she realized how the act of teaching renewed her energy and excitement. After earning her master's degree, Hope spent two years in the U.S. Peace Corps as a secondary mathematics and physics teacher in Swaziland, Africa. That experience was instrumental in her decision to pursue a Ph.D. in mathematics education.


Hope is currently teaching courses for prospective elementary and secondary mathematics teachers and is supervising secondary student-teachers. She is enjoying the opportunity to do mathematics coaching with these student teachers. She states, "I find that coaching others not only helps those I am coaching, but helps me to improve my own teaching." Hope is also interested in establishing relationships with area public schools with a view toward integrating her teaching, scholarship, and service.

Nearing the end of her first year at GVSU, Hope is impressed with the university and GVSU students. She states, "I love the people at GVSU. My colleagues are friendly and helpful. I love the culture of collegiality in the mathematics department. In addition, I am very impressed with the students at GVSU. They are bright and come to class open and ready to learn."

When Hope is not teaching or mentoring student teachers, she enjoys spending time with her family, which includes two daughters. She enjoys playing board games, reading, and attending plays. An interesting note is that one of her daughters appeared on Jeopardy Kids Week in the summer of 2011.

Jon Hasenbank

Jon Hasenbank

Jon Hasenbank is a mathematics educator who is interested in teaching for understanding and exploring uses of technology, including Smart Boards, tablets, and screencasting, to support teaching and learning. He earned his undergraduate degree in mathematics from Michigan Technological University and his master's in mathematics and his Ph.D. in mathematics with a mathematics education specialization from Montana State University. Before coming to Grand Valley, Jon was an Associate Professor of Mathematics Education at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse.

Jon decided to pursue graduate studies in mathematics education after receiving a National Science Foundation GK-12 Education Fellowship at Michigan Tech. The fellowship allowed him to experience some graduate level mathematics and to work closely with area high school teachers on curriculum development. That year-long experience was instrumental in Jon's decision to pursue a doctorate in mathematics education.


Jon currently teaches courses for prospective elementary and secondary mathematics teachers and is supervising secondary student-teachers. He is enjoying the opportunity to use cognitive coaching as a means for improving teacher practice and has been exploring strategies for giving meaningful feedback on performance tasks. As he continues at Grand Valley, he is interested in extending his work with podcasting to support teachers looking to implement a flipped (inverted) classroom model of instruction. He also would like to pursue external funding for a professional development project on flipped instruction methods and content knowledge development.

As he nears the end of his first year at GVSU, Dr. Hasenbank notes that he applied for a position at Grand Valley because of its reputation for excellence in teacher education. He continues, "I have not been disappointed. The students and faculty here have been wonderful to work with."

Dr. Hasenbank is also enjoying being back in Michigan. He and his wife and two young children spend many weekends visiting his parents, where the children get to feed cows, make maple syrup, go fishing, and "be spoiled rotten" by their grandparents.

Page last modified June 16, 2017