MEDIA RELEASE — January 17, 2018

Canadian Mathematical Society

January 17, 2018

Top Mathletes Emerge from the 2017 Canadian Open

OTTAWA, Ontario — The Canadian Mathematical Society (CMS) is pleased to announce the results of the 2017 Canadian Open Mathematics Challenge, supported by the Actuarial Profession, in particular the Casualty Actuarial Society (CAS) and the Society of Actuaries (SOA). On November 2, 2017, a record number of students wrote the Canadian Open Mathematics Challenge (COMC). The event took place in thousands of locations across Canada and internationally with nearly 6,000 students competing to qualify for the 2018 Canadian Mathematical Olympiad (CMO). The gold medal winners, who had perfect papers, are:

  • Qinyu Cui - Montreal Math Circle [Montreal, QC]
  • Alvin Zou - Olympic Educational Centre [Vancouver, BC]
  • Thomas Guo - Phillips Exeter Academy [Exeter, NH]

The 2017 Canadian Open Mathematics Challenge was made possible by a joint sponsorship agreement between the Society of Actuaries and the Casualty Actuarial Society - the Premier Sponsors of the COMC for the next three years.

“The Casualty Actuarial Society is proud to support a competition like the Canadian Open Math Challenge that encourages students to build their mathematical and problem-solving skills,” said CAS President Brian Brown, FCAS. “For the actuarial profession, as in other STEM fields, fostering these skills and an appreciation for critical thinking is what helps propel the next generation of actuaries. The goals of the Canadian Mathematical Society and this competition align closely with our own efforts to show students that a passion for mathematics can be a stepping stone towards a rewarding career.”

The Society of Actuaries (SOA) President Mike Lombardi (FSA, CERA, FCIA, MAAA) said “SOA is pleased to collaborate with the Casualty Actuarial Society (CAS) in sponsoring the Canadian Mathematical Society’s Canadian Open Mathematics Challenge. Our organization is proud to support mathematics in Canada, especially in fostering students’ interest in the actuarial profession.”

2017 Canada Champions (open to students who wrote in Canada) are:

Gold Qinyu Cui - Montreal Math Circle , QC
Alvin Zou - Olympic Educational Centre, BC
Silver Victor Rong - Marc Garneau Collegiate Institute, ON
Bronze Edgar Wang - Collège Jean-de-Brébeuf, QC
Honourable Mentions    Andrew Lin - University Hill Secondary School, BC
William Zhao - Richmond Hill High School, ON
Howard Halim - University of Toronto Schools, ON

2017 International Champions (open to students who wrote outside of Canada, regardless of citizenship) are:

Gold Thomas Guo - Phillips Exeter Academy, NH, USA
Silver Freddie Zhao - Indus Center for Academic Excellence, MI
Bronze Michael Ken - Phillips Academy, MA
Honourable Mentions    Chittesh Thavamani - Indus Center for Academic Excellence, MI
Bill Qin - Phillips Academy, MA
August Chen - Redmond High School, WA
Kevin Cong - Bergen County Academies, NJ

The full results are available here.

“Participation in this year’s contest demonstrates significant growth in the COMC both nationally and internationally. Many students found some of the problems quite challenging and the committee is amazed each year at the creativity of the students. Invariably correct solutions appear which we did not anticipate when the contest was created. My thanks go out to the marking teams, to Crowdmark for providing a platform for distributed grading, and to the COMC committee and the COMC problems committee for their hard work as volunteers.” Dr. Robert Woodrow, Chair, CMS-COMC Committee.

The CMS is delighted to collaborate with Crowdmark, an online grading and analytics platform developed by Professor James Colliander (UBC).

“Crowdmark’s philosophy is that education is a fundamentally human-to-human exchange. Our partnership with the COMC allows graders to thoroughly evaluate each students’ exam at the best of their ability while significantly reducing the time they would otherwise spend grading by hand,’ said Michelle Caers, Crowdmark’s Chief Marketing Officer, increasing the fairness, integrity, and security of the exam while respecting the time of the graders. We are delighted to support the CMS and the students writing the COMC.”

The Society would like to acknowledge the support of the Premier Sponsors – the CAS and the SOA; the COMC Committees chaired by Dr. Robert Woodrow (Calgary); Crowdmark, as well as the University partners and other sponors. For a list of COMC partners and sponsors, click here.

About the Canadian Mathematical Society (CMS)

Founded in 1945, the Canadian Mathematical Society (CMS) promotes the advancement, discovery, learning and application of mathematics. The CMS promotes mathematics through a rich array of activities including scientific meetings, publications, awards, prizes, grants, camps and competitions.

For more information on the COMC, please contact:

Dr. Robert Woodrow
Chair, CMS-COMC Committee
Dept. Of Mathematics, University of Calgary
Tel: (403) 220-6325
or Patricia Dack
Fundraising and Communications Officer
Canadian Mathematical Society
Tel: (613) 733-2662 ext. 728