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Media Release – Five Medals at International Mathematical Olympiad

MEDIA RELEASE
Australian student solves hardest problem in history of competition

The Australian team is bringing home three silver and two bronze medals, plus an honourable mention, from the 2017 International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO) in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

This year’s competition contained the hardest problem in the history of the IMO. Only seven students scored any points on the question, and only two, including Australia’s Linus Cooper, completely solved the problem. Australia has the distinction of scoring more points than any other country on this question with Hadyn Tang also achieving a partial score on the problem.

The Australian Mathematics Trust’s (AMT) CEO, Nathan Ford, said: ‘We had a great overall team result and it is a significant achievement for Australia to score more points than any other country on the hardest IMO problem in history. It shows how well our competitors are trained in solving complex problems. It’s a testament to Linus’ training, focus and perseverance that he solved it.’

The Australian team finished 34th out of 111 countries in the 58th International Mathematical Olympiad. The South Korean team were the outright winners, with each competitor earning a gold medal.

Six hundred and fifteen students participated in the IMO from the across the globe. The competition was held over 18 and 19 July with competitors having to solve three problems over four and a half hours each day.

The Australian team spent a year in exams and intensive training to make the Olympiad selection. They succeeded amongst more than 25,000 students participating in extension programs and qualifying exams. From that initial cohort, some thirty students attended two training schools before the final selection of the team.

The Australian results were:

2017 International Mathematical Olympiad
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
12 to 23 July

Student School State Result
James Bang Baulkham Hills High School NSW Bronze medal
Matthew Cheah Penleigh and Essendon Grammar School VIC Silver medal
Linus Cooper James Ruse Agricultural High School NSW Silver medal
William Hu Christ Church Grammar School WA Bronze medal
Hadyn Tang Trinity Grammar School VIC Honourable mention
Guowen Zhang St Joseph’s College QLD Silver medal

 

The selection process for the team to represent Australia at the 2018 International Mathematical Olympiad is already underway. Students from across the country are preparing to sit important competitions during Term 3 including the Australian Mathematics Competition (AMC), the Australian Intermediate Mathematics Olympiad (AIMO) and the Australian Mathematical Olympiad Committee (AMOC) Senior Contest.

Detailed results of the competition are located on the IMO official homepage.

MEDIA ENQUIRIES TO:
Kate O’Sullivan
Marketing and Communications Officer
Australian Mathematics Trust
02 6201 2663
kate.o’sullivan@amt.edu.au

 

Australian Olympians ready to take on the world in mathematics and informatics

IMO and IOI teams

Ten of Australia’s best students have made the teams to represent Australia at the International Mathematical Olympiad and International Olympiad in Informatics, taking place in July and August.

James Bang (Year 10, Baulkham Hills High School), Matthew Cheah (Year 12, Penleigh and Essendon Grammar School), Linus Cooper (Year 11, James Ruse Agricultural High School), William Hu (Year 11, Christ Church Grammar School), Hadyn Tang (Year 8, Trinity Grammar School) and Guowen Zhang (Year 11, St Joseph’s College) were named as the members of the 2017 team for the International Mathematical Olympiad, and will be heading to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, from the 12th to the 23rd of July. Richard Gong (Year 12, Sydney Grammar School), Charles Jameson (Year 12, Sydney Grammar School), Jerry Mao (Year 11, Caulfield Grammar School) and Angus Ritossa (Year 10, St Peter’s College) make up the team heading to the International Olympiad in Informatics and will be heading to Tehran, Iran, from the 28th of July to the 4th of August.

The Olympians received their Australian team blazers before the Federal Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science, Senator the Hon Arthur Sinodinos AO, at an official team announcement ceremony at Parliament House, Canberra, on Monday 19 June.

This year’s youngest Olympian, Hadyn Tang said: ‘I am looking forward to being able to challenge myself at the IMO [International Mathematics Olympiad], and to have the opportunity to explore more areas of mathematics and meet other mathematical peers.’

These students have spent a year in exams and intensive training to make the cut. They came from a pool of more than 25,000 students through extension programs and qualifying exams.  After making a shortlist of 150, they attended intensive training schools for ultimate selection to the teams.

The Olympiad programs are funded through the Australian Government’s National Innovation and Science Agenda, with additional sponsorship from Optiver.

International Olympiad in Informatics 

28 July – 4 August, Tehran, Iran         

Richard Gong Year 12 Sydney Grammar School NSW
Charles Jameson Year 12 Sydney Grammar School NSW
Jerry Mao Year 11 Caulfield Grammar School VIC
Angus Ritossa Year 10 St Peter’s College SA
International Mathematical Olympiad 

12–23 July, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

James Bang Year 10 Baulkham Hills High School NSW
Matthew Cheah Year 12 Penleigh and Essendon Grammar School VIC
Linus Cooper Year 11 James Ruse Agricultural High School NSW
William Hu Year 11 Christ Church Grammar School WA
Hadyn Tang Year 8 Trinity Grammar School VIC
Guowen Zhang Year 11 St Joseph’s College QLD
 
Melbourne student is first girl ever picked for Australian Informatics Olympiad team

Melbourne student is first girl ever picked for Australian Informatics Olympiad team

Belinda Shi, a year 12 student from Methodist Ladies’ College in Melbourne, will be the first Australian girl to compete at the International Olympiad in Informatics.

“I’m excited to be the first female on Australia’s International Olympiad in Informatics team,” she says.

Keen to counter the misconception that ‘girls can’t code’, Belinda decided to establish a coding club at school. Her goal is to introduce other girls at her school to informatics, programming and robotics. “I want to encourage girls to keep an open mind and give programming and technology a go, because learning to code is not only fun and rewarding but it’s a skill that’s useful in so many fields,” she says.

According to research commissioned by the Australian Computer Society, women hold only 28 per cent of Australian ICT jobs compared to 43 per cent of professional industry jobs. Encouraging girls to learn coding at school is a critical part of the challenge to increase the number of women in ICT careers.

Members of the Australian Mathematical and Informatics Olympiad teams are pictured above: (from left) Wilson Zhao, Ilia Kucherov, Johnny Lim, Jerry Mao, Richard Gong, Kevin Xian, Declan McDonnell and Belinda Shi; and inserts (from left) are Seyoon Ragavan and Michelle Chen.

Members of the International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO) team, Michelle Chen and Seyoon Ragavan, are part of a cohort of 10 international special guests to be invited to train at the United States Math Olympiad Summer Program, which is running from 7 June to 2 July at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. This is a high honour for Michelle and Seyoon as the US is the reigning champion in the IMO. Australia has been invited due to our very strong performances at recent IMOs.

Twenty-seven of Australia’s brightest student biologists, chemists, computer programmers, physicists, mathematicians and Earth scientists have been selected to represent Australia at the UNESCO-sanctioned International Science and Mathematical Olympiads in July and August. The students have succeeded from an initial pool of more than 150,000 high school students who sat open qualifying exams, including the Australian Science Olympiad Exams and the Australian Mathematics Competition. The Australian Mathematics Trust runs the Mathematical and Informatics Olympiad programs.

The Olympians will compete against 2000 of the world’s smartest kids at competitions in Vietnam (Biology), Georgia (Chemistry), Japan (Earth Science), Russia (Informatics), Hong Kong (Mathematics) and Switzerland (Physics). They will receive their Australian team blazers at a team announcement ceremony at Parliament House, Canberra, on Monday 20 June. Media personality and maths whiz Adam Spencer will attend the ceremony together with one of Australia’s leading mathematics professors, The University of Sydney’s Dr Jacqui Ramagge, parents, teachers, academics, Olympiad alumni and officials.

“At a time when we are seeing a declining proportion of students choosing to study advanced maths and science subjects at high school, it is vital to have these national Olympiad programs to nurture and celebrate our science and maths talent,” says Adam Spencer.

Students inspired to win a place at next year’s International Science Olympiads can register for the Australian Science Olympiad Exams by 20 July at www.asi.edu.au. Students interested in next year’s International Mathematical Olympiad still have time to enter the Australian Mathematics Competition through their schools at www.amt.edu.au.

The Olympiad programs are supported by the Australian Government Department of Education and Training through the Mathematics and Science Participation Program. BHP Billiton Sustainable Communities and the Australian National University are supporters of the Australian Science Olympiad Competition. Optiver is a sponsor of the Mathematical and Informatics Olympiad programs.

Australian team members for the 2016 International Mathematical and Informatics Olympiads:

International Olympiad in Informatics        

12 to 19 August, Kazan, Russia                    

  1. Richard Gong, Year 11, Sydney Grammar School, NSW
  2. Jerry Mao, Year 10, Caulfield Grammar School, VIC
  3. Declan McDonnell, Year 12, Normanhurst Boys High School, NSW
  4. Belinda Shi, Year 12, Methodist Ladies’ College, VIC

 

International Mathematical Olympiad          

6 to 16 July, Hong Kong

  1. Michelle Chen, Year 12, Methodist Ladies’ College, VIC
  2. Ilia Kucherov, Year 12, Westall Secondary College, VIC
  3. Johnny Lim, Year 12, Killara High School, NSW
  4. Seyoon Ragavan, Year 12, Knox Grammar School, NSW
  5. Kevin Xian, Year 12, James Ruse Agricultural High School, NSW
  6. Wilson Zhao, Year 12, Killara High School, NSW
 

International Mathematical Modelling Challenge

An opportunity for students to work as part of a team to solve a genuine real world problem using mathematics

Schools may be interested in this new mathematical modelling competition which begins next year.  This competition is being organised by ACER, but AMT is represented on the national advisory group.  This will be a challenging opportunity for some students to work as a team on a real world maths problem.  Please see the flyer for more details.

 International Mathematical Modelling Challenge

 
Australia leaps into top 10 at 2015 IMO

Australia leaps into top 10 at 2015 IMO

With 2 Gold and 4 Silver medals at the 2015 International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO), held this week in Chiang Mai, Thailand, our young secondary school students delivered an outstanding performance. In our best result in 35 years of competition, the team improved Australia’s ranking from 11th last year to 6th in the world.

IMO_2015_team+leaders2

The IMO team after the Closing Ceremony with their medals, from left: Dr Angelo Di Pasquale, Team Leader, Jeremy Yip, Seyoon Ragavan, Yang Song, Ilia Kucherov, Alexander Gunning, Kevin Xian and Andrew Elvey Price, Deputy Team Leader.

Alexander Gunning on the way to collect his Gold medal at the 2015 IMO closing ceremony

Alexander Gunning on the way to collect his Gold medal at the 2015 IMO closing ceremony

See the interview with Alexander Gunning on the ABC Morning Show Monday 20 July 2015 here. Multi-medallist Alexander Gunning scored Gold and was ranked individually 4th in the world. With three Golds and a Bronze he is now the highest Australian on the IMO Hall of Fame leader board. Seyoon Ragavan was also awarded Gold for his 19th placing. All our other team members scored Silver: Yang Song, at his second IMO, Jeremy Yip, Kevin Xian and Ilia Kucherov on their first attempt.

Seyoon Ragavan wins Gold for his efforts at 2015 IMO.

Seyoon Ragavan wins Gold at the 2015 IMO.

See Seyoon’s story on SBS news here. Read articles about Seyoon in the Sydney Morning Herald and Canberra Times. Jeremy Yip

Jeremy Yip receives his Silver medal at the 2015 IMO.

Listen to the interview with Jeremy by 774ABC Melbourne’s Rafael Epstein here.

Listen to an interview with Adam Spencer by Mike Jeffreys on radio 2UE.

The competition attracted 577 contestants from 104 countries, and was held in Thailand from 8 to 16 July. Students sat the IMO papers on 10 and 11 July, then awaited the marking and jury decisions.

>> Official IMO results are available here

2015 Team Results

The Australian team members and their results are:

Name
Year
School
Score
Medal
Alexander Gunning 12 Glen Waverley Secondary College VIC 36 Gold
Seyoon Ragavan 11 Knox Grammar School NSW 29 Gold
Jeremy Yip 12 Trinity Grammar School VIC 23 Silver
Kevin Xian 11 James Ruse Agricultural High School NSW 21 Silver
Yang Song 12 James Ruse Agricultural High School NSW 20 Silver
Ilia Kucherov 11 Westall Secondary College VIC 19 Silver

The cut-off scores for medals were Gold 26, Silver 19 and Bronze 14.

 

Thursday 7 August 2014

Media personality and The University of Sydney’s Mathematics and Science Ambassador, Adam Spencer, visited his daughters’ local primary school to wish the students good luck in the 37th annual Australian Mathematics Competition (AMC) sponsored by the Commonwealth Bank.

AMC Day with Adam Spencer

Adam Spencer celebrates 2014 AMC Day with excited students

Adam believes passionately in the need to promote the importance of mathematics and demonstrates his commitment by providing voluntary maths tutoring at the school. With his encouragement, the school entered the AMC for the first time. Adam’s daughters and their schoolmates joined the nearly 30,000 students new to competing in the AMC.

Students of all levels of ability, from all types of schools in vastly different locations around the country, sat a 75-minute secondary paper or a 60-minute primary paper which contained some quirky questions with an emphasis on fun and problem solving.

Adjunct Professor Mike Clapper, Executive Director of the not-for-profit Australian Mathematics Trust, which administers the competition, said,

‘We were delighted to welcome a number of Australian schools who will be participating in this historic competition for the first time, especially primary schools, as encouraging the study of maths at an early age is vital. It is also good to see entry numbers increase in the Northern Territory and the ACT’.

‘The competition is designed to be accessible to all students but it also identifies the most talented, who can then go on to a series of Trust enrichment programs that nurture their special ability and may lead to success, such as for the two Australian students who topped this year’s International Mathematical and Informatics Olympiads, achieving perfect scores, gold medals and tying for first ranking globally’, he added.