posted November 18, 2003

Hope Students Win MATH Challenge

A student team from Hope College has won the 2003 statewide Michigan Autumn Take Home (MATH) Challenge.

A total of 46 teams from 16 colleges and universities from throughout Michigan participated in the event, which was held on Saturday, Nov. 1.

The winning three-member team from Hope consisted of sophomore Daniela Banu of Bucharest, Romania; junior Stefan Coltisor of Bucharest, Romania; and junior Heidi Libner of Park Ridge, Ill. Their score of 85 out of 100 beat the second-place team by 10 points.

Banu and Coltisor had also been on the three-student team from Hope that won the Lower Michigan Mathematics Competition held in April of this year. Coltisor was on Hope's winning team in the 2002 Lower Michigan Mathematics Competition as well.

The MATH Challenge consists of a three-hour exam presenting 10 problems dealing with topics and concepts found in the undergraduate mathematics curriculum. Students take the exam on their own campus, working in teams of two or three each.

Hope fielded a total of six teams. The other Hope students who participated were: sophomore Brandon Alleman of Morrice; sophomore Jim Boerkoel of Fennville; sophomore Betsy Carlson of Slidell, La.; freshman Andy Jarosz of Norridge, Ill.; freshman Kevin Lin of Holland; sophomore Rachel Lindner of Asheville, N.C.; freshman Stephen Minnich of Holland; sophomore Tasuku Nishino of Kamogawa City, Japan; freshman Giao Tran of Holland; sophomore Megan Vivian of McBain; and freshman Emily Walsh of St. Joseph.

The Hope students were advised by Dr. Aaron Cinzori, assistant professor of mathematics.

The other schools with teams in the top 10 were: Calvin College, second and fifth; Michigan Tech. University, third; Lawrence Tech. University, fourth; Albion College, fifth; Central Michigan University, seventh and eighth; and Grand Valley State University and Millsaps College, tied for ninth.

Also participating in the challenge were: Alma College, Belmont University, Ferris State University, Kalamazoo College, Saint Mary's College, Spring Arbor University, Saginaw Valley State University and the University of Michigan at Flint.