More than 100 students from California high schools will arrive at Westmont Collegeon Feb. 9 for math competitions.
The 31st annual Westmont College Mathematics Contest will have a record total of 12 high schools competing, according to a news release. They include Cate,Crescenta Valley, Dos Pueblos, La Canada, Mark Keppel, Oaks Christian, Pacific Bay Christian, Providence, San Marcos, Santa Barbara, Synergy QuantumAcademy and Thatcher high schools.
That is significantly more than the seven high schools that competed in last year’s competition, a growth that Westmont spokesman Scott Craig credited to Westmont professors being heavily involved with outreach to California high schools.
“I think it had to do with Westmont’s math and computer science program. We have a few very active professors,” he said.
Among them is math professor and event organizer Russ Howell, who said many global issues will “require solutions from people with mathematical talent.”
“It is vital that, whenever possible, those who are exploring the mathematical enterprise get encouragement to continue,” he said.
The competition will begin at 1 p.m. Feb. 9 with events like the College Bowl Prelims, during which teams from different schools try to be first in delivering the right answer to a series of short questions, the Team Exam, where a team from each school must work together to tackle five math problems, and the Chalk Talk Prelims, in which a student from each school gives a 10- to 12-minute talk on a predetermined topic for a panel of judges.
According to the event’s website, this year’s topic is “cryptology,” and students are judged on their presentation’s clarity, use of visual aids, delivery, focus and depth, and mathematical correctness.
The College Bowl Finals and Chalk Talk Finals for grades 9 to 10 and 11 to 12 will be held from 4 to 5:15 p.m. at the Darling Foundation Lecture Hall in Winter Hall, room 210.
The awards banquet will be held at 5:30 p.m. in the Founders Room near the dining commons. During the banquet KEYT meteorologist Alan Rose will give a talk about computer models in weather forecasting.