The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Local Education

December 8, 2013

Lapel grad helps students solve math, science questions

Rose-Hulman's Homework Hotline assists high, middle school students

TERRE HAUTE — Matthew Conrad, a Lapel High School graduate, takes phone calls from struggling students.

As a tutor for Rose-Hulman’s Homework Hotline, he might get calls from students in grades 6-12 wrestling with math, science or sometimes English language questions. The calls come on school nights from all over Indiana and some from other states.

“A great majority of the questions we get are probably about senior high math, like algebra,” Conrad said. “The way we try to help is not just give them the answer. Our main goal is to get them to understand the process so they can answer questions without our help.”

Matthew is the son of Bart and Lisa Conrad of rural Lapel. As a chemical engineering student, he is in his sophomore year at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology.

Homework Hotline is normally staffed from 7 to 10 p.m. on school nights by 35 to 40 trained tutors. There is no charge for students to call, email or enter online chats.

Homework Hotline employs approximately 150 tutors. All are certified by the National Tutoring Association. Tutors must be recommended by faculty and they’re selected based on their technical knowledge and communications skills.

In the 2012-13 school year, tutors answered 37,000 calls, conducted a record 3,767 online sessions and helped students from every Indiana county, according to a release. Since 1991, the service has taken 461,803 calls. The service is funded by Rose-Hulman and Lilly Endowment Inc.

Lindsay Hull, Homework Hotline assistant director of operation and education, said the hotline received calls from 46 states last year.

Contact Randy Rendfeld at, or call 640-4861.

To Reach Homework Hotline Call 1-877-ASK-ROSE, or submit questions online at The free service is aimed at middle and high school students and is generally open 7 to 10 p.m. on school nights.

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