An international math symposium held Nov. 8 at Chapman University brought together some of the many scholars who over the years received inspiring mentorship from Carlos A. Berenstein (1944-2019), one of the foremost mathematicians of his generation.
Among those paying homage and sharing memories was Chapman President Daniele C. Struppa, who was Berenstein’s first doctoral student at the University of Maryland.
“He used to answer my naive questions with variations of ‘this is actually not trivial,’ something that encouraged my willingness to ask questions,” Struppa recalled in a memorial tribute to Berenstein published in the journal Notices of the American Mathematical Society.
There was a signature moment during the Chapman symposium, as attendees gathered in Swenson Family Hall of Engineering to dedicate a special space. President Struppa did the honors, cutting a ribbon to inaugurate the Carlos A. Berenstein Collaboration Space.
A plaque at the location inside Keck Center for Science and Engineering reads in part, “This collaborative space is named after [Carlos A. Berenstein] as a sign of respect and gratitude by his students and friends.”
Those friends made it clear that Berenstein’s profound influence will long endure.
“Carlos’s generosity and impact on so many of us have been inestimable,” Struppa said in his tribute. “His career has not only advanced mathematics, but allowed many younger mathematicians to come of age and to learn from him in so many ways.”