Mathletes prepare to take on notorious AMCs

February 2, 2013 — by Brandon Judoprasetijo and Michelle Leung

The school’s mathletes have recently been hard at work preparing for one of the most critical competitions of the year: the American Mathematics Competition (AMC).

The school’s mathletes have recently been hard at work preparing for one of the most critical competitions of the year: the American Mathematics Competition (AMC). The first contest was on Feb. 5 and the second will be held on Feb. 20.

The 25-question multiple choice test is distributed in two levels in high school, and is intended for students of all mathematical talent to participate in. The AMC 10 can only be taken by underclassmen while the more advanced AMC 12 is available to both upper and underclassmen.

Students who score at least 100 or 120 points on the AMC 10 or 12 respectively qualify for the American Invitational Mathematics Exam (AIME). Only the top 2.5 percent of AMC 10 takers and the top 5 percent of AMC 12 takers are admitted to the AIME, another qualifying test that leads to the United States of America Mathematical Olympiad (USAMO).  This year, 57 students will be participating in the competition.

"I expect the club to do well,” said junior Priyanka Krishnamurthi, the math club chief of staff. “We have amazing members who work really hard and do really well on competitions, so I think they will also do well on AMC, hopefully earning the chance to take other competitions like AIME and USAMO as well."

The school has traditionally done well in the AMC. Although the school recently dropped from top 10 in the country to 19th, only Palo Alto is ranked higher in the local area.

“Compared to most schools, [our results last year] would have been very good,” math teacher PJ Yim said. “We actually weren’t as strong as in previous years, but it was a respectable result. We even had a few kids make it into the USAMO, five or six of 500 nationally.”

According to Yim, the current crop of freshmen are very strong. Particularly outstanding freshmen include Celine Liang, Sean Shi, Nathan Ney, Brandon Ney and Kristine Zhang. In addition, Yim has high expectations for seniors Amanda Chow and Edward Dong. Despite the potential he sees in the club this year, Yim is looking mainly for improvement.

“I want my students to do their best,” Yim said. “Basically what I look at is what they did last year and push them to do better this year. I’m just looking for positive change. I like high numbers, but it’s not what I’m concerned about. We want improvement. Those who do well [in these competitions] tend to be really bright.”

1 view this week