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John Mighton

John Mighton

BA (Hons), MA, PhD
Honorary Doctor of Science

Author, playwright, mathematician, and social activist John Mighton has dedicated his life to improving access to math for all children.

After earning his PhD in mathematics from the University of Toronto in 2000, Mighton chose to forego an academic career and instead focused his efforts on charity work. While tutoring in low-income neighborhoods during his studies, he was inspired to develop a program that would make math more accessible to children of all backgrounds.

This led to the creation of the Junior Undiscovered Math Prodigies (JUMP) Math program in 2001. It was developed with Mighton’s belief that if you improve math access for children, it will not only translate to better outcomes in other academic subjects, but also promote more widespread social change.

Today, JUMP Math is the core kindergarten-to-grade-8 math program for approximately 170,000 students in Canada, 16,000 students in the United States, and 40,000 students in Spain. It’s also the core math program for nearly 20 per cent of Indigenous students attending kindergarten through eighth grade in First Nations across Canada.

For his work, Mighton has been named a Schwab Foundation Social Entrepreneur of the Year, an Ernst and Young Social Entrepreneur of the Year for Canada, an Ashoka Fellow, and Officer of the Order of Canada; has received four honorary doctorates; and is the recipient of the 10th annual Egerton Ryerson Award for Dedication to Public Education.

Mighton also has ties to UWinnipeg. In 2011, the math and statistics department co-organized a math education conference with him, drawing hundreds of educators and members of the public to campus.

For his dedication and ongoing efforts to making mathematics more accessible to children across the world, The University of Winnipeg is proud to award John Mighton an Honorary Doctor of Science.