A Nation Celebrates Students in Mathematics at MathCON

MathCON hosts 1,500 students  at the Annual National Math Competition on May 5

The 10th Annual MathCON 2018 Finals went off without a hitch this past weekend at the UIC Forum in Chicago, IL, where 1,500 plus attendees gathered including our future mathematicians, entrepreneurs and leaders of tomorrow,  to celebrate math and scholarship. Students, parents, and coaches spent the day hearing from guest speakers, battling in a race to solve a Rubik’s cube and honoring the accomplished students.

The 528 attending finalists took the final written exam from 11 am to 12:30 pm, working to answer 45 questions in 90 minutes.

After the exam, attendees gathered for entertainment with DJ Ryan, a round of Game 24, and a show from Tom London – Tech Magician & Hacker.

The MathCON finalists comprise the top 1% of the 52,000 students who participated in the online competition. It is a high honor, then, to be part of the 95 students who were awarded Bronze, Silver, Gold, and National Champion at the finals: these 95 students make up the top 0.2% of competitors in the nation.

One student, Prastik Mohanraj, an 11th grade student at ESUMS, received the Jones Day Award Scholarship for obtaining the highest score of all the participants who have been invited back for the fourth year in a row.

Mohanraj talked passionately about his love of math and how important MathCON has been for him the last four years. When asked what his favorite part of MathCON was this year, Mohanraj answered:

 

“To be honest, it was when I was struggling with some of the problems on the exam. This exam felt much harder than past years, even accounting for the grade level difference. I struggled, it felt difficult, I was wracking my brain, but thinking back in retrospect, I enjoyed having that bigger challenge. I think that was the most fascinating part of this experience for me.”

Other students expressed their excitement about participating in MathCON for this first time and getting to make new friends and peers who enjoy math as much as they do. Tom London – Tech Magician & Hacker, ended his time with the students by encouraging them to connect with each other. He talked of the importance of collaboration and learning together, and encouraged contestants to walk away from the event with life-long friends rather than just competitors.

MathCON is an innovative mathematics platform that integrates the competition series with educational resources and opportunities for students and educators, developed to enhance mathematics education. Their vision is to build a collaborative mathematics community for students and educators in order to support, advocate and influence STEM education in the U.S. to pave the way for the 21st century generation of problem-solvers. MathCON would not be the thriving organization that it is without the help and support of the MathCON Advisory Board and the Event Day sponsors: Jones Day; Nicola Gudbranson & Cooper, LLC; Ohio Coalition for Quality Education (OCQE); Professor Einstein; and DiversityComm.