Vanessa Vakharia is a multi-talented Canadian woman, who in her own words is “Basically the Lady Gaga of math, but also in an actual rock band.”
Vanessa is a dedicated teacher, published author, podcaster, and leading expert in the field of youth engagement in education. She runs a math and science tutoring centre called The Math Guru and is a frequent speaker at math education conferences globally. Vanessa loves working with young women in traditionally male-dominated STEM fields and has shared her knowledge internationally in an interactive and accessible workshop for young people, academics, and educators.
She is a regular guest on City TV, Global Television and CBC radio throughout the school year sharing tips for parents and students, and she is a sought-after source for parent blogs, national newspapers and academic journals.
Another hat Vanessa wears is as a musician. Along with David Kochberg, Vanessa formed the rock band Goodnight, Sunrise in 2011. In May 2018, Goodnight, Sunrise was selected by the Toronto radio station Q107 to open for Bon Jovi at the Air Canada Centre. They followed this success with a Canada-wide summer tour with performances at Evolve Festival, Riverfest Elora, and Dawson City Music Festival.
Vanessa plays keytar in the band and shares lead vocals with her bandmate David, and they just finished recording their 3rd album which will come out in 2022 to follow their new single “Won’t Be Long” which was released earlier this year.
Vanessa used to hate math, and after failing grade 11 math twice, she decided to look at math from a different perspective. The resulting success of this shift inspired her to encourage other people to do the same. She discovered that “math people” do not exist, but good teachers do.
The Math Guru tutoring studio was founded in 2010 by Vanessa, who is also a certified high school math teacher with a master’s in mathematics education. She decided to make it her mission to provide a space for students to look at math and science from a different perspective, and to approach all areas of education and knowledge from that enhanced scope.
While we’re talking about numbers, we must also mention Math Therapy, which is the inspirational podcast that helps listeners work through their math trauma, one problem at a time. Each week, Vanessa features a guest discussing their relationship with math and explores the educational highs and lows that can make or break our self-confidence.
Oftentimes creators that we work with have interests and projects in multiple fields. Byron has worked with Vanessa regarding her music career pertaining to legal agreements (Goodnight, Sunrise), her literary career regarding book publishing agreements (Math Hacks) and her podcast as well (Math Therapy). Sources: The Math Guru, Scholastic Canada, Wikipedia
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Updated to October 7, 2021
Author: Erin Moskal, Office Manager
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