Words: Caroline Chu
On February 25, ten Centennial students, divided into two teams of five, will compete in Moody’s Mega Math Challenge.
The Challenge requires each group to work with one teacher-coach to solve a 14-hour applied mathematics problem. Past problems have included those related to car usage, the value of higher education, and student nutrition.
Robert Kennedy and Timothy Watson, two of Centennial’s math teachers, plan to lead the two teams. The problem will be received at 7 a.m. and a solution will be uploaded at 9 p.m.
Ten students were selected to represent Centennial High School in the Challenge this year. Mr. Kennedy and Mr. Watson chose these contestants from a group of 15 with the help from Elaine Whalen, another Centennial teacher.
A panel of 225 Ph.D.- level applied mathematicians will determine the Challenge finalists sometime in April. Scholarship prizes for the competition total $150,000, and the grand prize is $20,000, which is divided among the winning team members.
Kennedy discussed the prospect of a future program that would start training competitors as ninth-graders, which would increase the chances of Centennial teams taking home a win.
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