The Southwest Center for Arithmetic Geometry
Non-US citizens should consult this important information on visas and reimbursements.
Tucson is located in southern Arizona, about 60 miles from Mexico. (Here is a pop-up overview map which shows its relation to other areas of the state.) Tucson is in the heart of the Sonoran desert, and is surrounded by significant mountains, including the 9100-foot high Mount Lemmon. It is also one of the oldest settlements in North America and enjoys a rich mix of Native American, Hispanic, and Anglo culture.
Here are a few columns from the NY Times on Tucson: A Distinct Western Flavor And Plenty of Sunny Days (9/24/02), 36 Hours in Tucson (10/31/03), An Archipelago in the Arizona Sky (11/28/03), The Many Layers of Tucson (1/25/04), and Taking a Swing Through Tucson to See Saguaros and Spring Training (3/6/05). (The Cuban place mentioned in the last article is across the street from the garage near the department mentioned in the driving directions below.)
The University of Arizona was founded in 1885 with 32 students and 6 teachers. Today the University of Arizona has about 34,000 students and about 1600 faculty members. Its annual research grants total about $320 million.
The Mathematics Department of the University of Arizona has about 60 tenured or tenure-track faculty and about 50 graduate students. (There are about another 50 graduate students in the closely related program in applied mathematics.) The department is known for its strengths in applied mathematics, math education research and outreach, and number theory, among other things.
The Arizona Winter School is funded by the National Science Foundation. NSF rules require that all reimbursed air flights be purchased on U.S. airlines. The Tucson International Airport is located south of the city, only about 8 miles from the University, and is served by several major airlines, including American, America West, Continental, Delta, Northwest, Southwest, and United. The simplest way to get to the University or a hotel is to take a taxi, or else to use the Arizona Stagecoach van service (520-889-1000), which has a desk in the baggage claim area. A taxi is about $30, and the one-way fare on Arizona Stagecoach is about $20, so for two people going to the same destination a shared taxi is likely to be cheaper. The airport's web site has details on other transportation options, as well as much other useful information.
It is also possible to fly to Phoenix's Sky Harbor Airport and drive or take a shuttle service to Tucson. The one-way trip is about 100 miles and takes about 2 hours.
If you're looking for a more leisurely mode of travel you might consider Amtrak's Texas Eagle service. It stops in Tucson on its way between Chicago and Los Angeles.
The two hotels most convenient to the math department are the Marriott University Park (800-228-9290) and the Sheraton Four Points University (formerly known as the Plaza) (800-843-8052). Both are adjacent to campus and an easy walk to the math department. The Marriott is newer, better located with respect to restaurants and entertainment, and more expensive.
The weather in Tucson in March is quite pleasant: daytime highs are generally in the 70's or 80's with overnight lows in the 40's. There is very little chance of rain so you can expect blue skies.
Here is the National Weather Service forecast for Tucson.