Women’s History Month: A slice of memorial Pie

Leaving a legacy using Pi day and preservice teachers

March 14 is Pi day, and just about everybody loves pie right? Well not pie but 3.14159, that pi. The math department celebrates Pi day with a pie to the face, a fundraiser used to help our Tarleton preservice teachers. This fundraiser was started and maintained by the late Rose Ann Jackson. It is now being continued in her legacy, by her family and the Tarleton math department.

Mrs. Jackson passed on December 25, 2021. During her career as a math professor she was loved by both students and faculty, with many students deeming her ‘the best math teacher they have ever had.’

Another math professor Dr. Beth Riggs states that, “Mrs. Rose Ann Jackson was one of the sweetest women I knew… she helped to break down barriers that come with being a female professor in the math career, so she has also influenced me to want to do the same.” 

A trail blazer who is kind and cares for everyone, was the general consensus for her personality and the way she lived her life. Before passing Mrs. Jackson or J. Rose, which she was called affectionately by her students, helped to maintain and found a fundraiser meant to help preservice teachers. 

This fundraiser takes place on March 14, or Pi day, where the students and faculty can donate money to have three of the professors from the math department pied in the face. This year they raised around seven hundred and thirty dollars, the proceeds will go towards helping a newly graduated teacher set up their classroom. Mrs. Jackson was painfully aware how hard it is for a new teacher to decorate a classroom with so little funds which is why this fundraiser exists. 

“It’s for a good cause,” many of the elite students that belong to the math department shout.

As they both begrudgingly and graciously added money into the jars or Venmo’s of their favorite math teacher, excitedly anticipating their pie to the face.

Now as a memorial to Mrs. Jackson, both the math department and her family hold up this Pi day tradition. Her son who is also an agriculture professor at Tarleton also awaited this event, especially since it would be the first year without her presence. This service will be upheld for many years to come, as Mrs. Jackson’s benefaction. Whom will now be added to another piece of history for women who have made amazing contributions to this campus. Even with her passing she can still serve as an inspiration for other women who wish to go into a teaching or math career.