A Stuyvesant record number of thirteen students were invited to compete in the United States of America Mathematical Olympiad (USAMO) on Tuesday, April 28 and Wednesday April 29. The previous record, set last year, was ten.
The USAMO is a two-day examination that lasts four and a half hours each day. There are a total of six proof questions that involve number theories, geometry, inequalities, algebra, and combinatorics which is the study of counting that deals with sets the selection, arrangement, and operation of elements within sets.
Over 500 students competed in the examination nationwide. Of these, the top 25 freshmen and top 18 non-freshmen will be invited to the Mathematics Olympiad Summer Program (MOSP) where the US Olympiad team will be selected to compete at the International Mathematics Olympiad that will be held in Germany this July.
The thirteen students were freshman Genghis Chau, sophomores Milo Beckman, Jao-ke Chin-Lee, Daniel Mendelsohn, Joseph Park, Yichi Zhang, juniors Yevgeniy Rudoy, Shaoxiang Wang (two-time qualifier), and seniors Paul Fisher, Daniel Gitelman (two-time qualifer), Benjamin Hirsch (two-time qualifier), Daniel Jeng, and Adam Sealfon (two-time qualifier).
“Stuyvesant ranked third in the nation for the most students that were invited to the USAMO” Assistant Principle of Mathematics Maryann Ferrara said. The first was Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology in Alexandria, Virginia with eighteen students attending and the second was Phillips Exeter Academy in Exeter, New Hampshire with sixteen students attending.
The Mathematical Association of American invited students to the USAMO based on their combined scorings in the American Math Competition (AMC) and American Invitational Mathematics Examination (AIME).
The participants felt great about competing in the USAMO. “I was excited and proud of my accomplishment,” Mendelsohn said. “It was almost a relief because last year I just barely missed qualifying.”
Students were prepared for the USAMO in their Math team classes. “In class we went over some problems and techniques,” Math teacher and Math team coach James Cocoros said in an e-mail interview. “The students also use books and on-line resources like Art of Problem Solving.”
“I did not have much time to prepare this year,” Hirsch said. “Last year, I also did a training program called Worldwide Online Olympiad Training through the Art [of] Problem Solving Website, and looked at far more USAMO problems as well as problems from other countries’ Mathematical Olympiads than I did this year.”
“Although four and half hours seems a like a lot, it went by really fast,” Mendelsohn said. “It was actually pretty fun.”