Joshua Metzler, a Hope College senior from Chelsea, has finished third in the state in the 1998 William Lowell Putnam Mathematics Competition.
Metzler's score of 47 out of 120 also earned 165th
place nationally in the competition out of a total of 2,581
He participated in the contest as part of a three-
member Hope team that also included seniors Benjamin Messer
of Stilwell, Kan., and James Vanderhyde of Comstock Park.
The team placed 78th nationally out of teams representing
The college's department of mathematics
characterizes the Putnam Exam as "a notoriously challenging
exam consisting of 12 mind-numbing problems." The
competitors are undergraduate students from throughout the
United States and Canada, who take the examination on their
own campuses in December. The problems cut across many
areas of mathematics, and are designed to test originality
as well as technical competence.
As one of the top three finishers among all
students at Michigan colleges and universities, Metzler will
be honored on Friday, May 7, during an awards banquet held
by the Michigan Section of the Mathematical Association of
America. The banquet will be held on the campus of Eastern
Michigan University in Ypsilanti.
Metzler, who is a religion and chemistry major,
competed in the exam during each of his four years at Hope.
He was recently elected to the college's chapter of Phi Beta
Kappa, and during Hope's Honors Convocation on Thursday,
April 30, received the college's Senior Biblical Prize.
He is a member of the college's chapter of Mortar
Board and the Pi Mu Epsilon mathematics honorary society.
His activities also include varsity cross country and track,
the College Chorus, the Fellowship of Christian Students and
serving as a resident assistant.
Metzler's immediate plan is to volunteer this
summer with Jubilee Partners in Comer, Ga., a Christian
community that works with refugees from war-torn parts of
the world, teaching them English and helping them to find
employment and housing in the Atlanta, Ga., area. He served
with the organization during Hope's past two spring breaks
through mission trips coordinated by the college's campus
He is the son Paul and Arlene Seelbach of Chelsea,
and Michael and Marcea Metzler of Dexter. He is a 1995
graduate of Chelsea High School.