This year’s MathWorks Math Modeling Challenge (M3C) winners were announced Wednesday, March 28, with one of Pine View’s teams making it to the finals. Of the two Pine View teams which participated, the Log Ness Monsters ranked among the top six teams in the nation from a pool of 4000 candidates.
The members of the Log Ness Monsters are as follows:
Sarah Mihm (12)
Dylan Hull (12)
Chloe Harris (12)
Tristan Lee (12)
Zoe McDonald (11)
The annual competition, formerly known as Moody’s Mega Math Challenge, invites a team of three to five eleventh- and twelfth-grade students to work for 14 consecutive hours to solve a real-world related math problem through the creation of a 20-page paper. This year’s question centered on the topic of food insecure households across the United States and how to mitigate the problems they experience by re-purposing food waste.
Leading up to the event, the teams prepared through two five-hour mock sessions in which the teams worked to complete challenges from previous years. As coach of the two teams, statistics teacher Mark Mattia organized the mock events to help the team prepare themselves for the competition in March.
The Log Ness Monster’s prize-winning plan suggested the creation of food waste donation centers where individuals could donate left-over food so those in need could receive food they needed. Through refrigerated semi-truck shipping containers, these centers could easily serve many individuals with the resources they needed. To develop their paper and plan, modeling was developed by Lee who used a Monte Carlo code to solve the problems at hand. “It was a relatively simple code that really helped us in the end, especially with the second segment of the challenge,” he said.
On the team’s success, Mihm said, “I know we did well, but I was still definitely surprised when we found out how high we ranked.”
For their success, the Log Ness Monsters have been invited to New York City, N.Y., April 30. The students will go to trading firm called Jane Street, where judges will determine the exact ranking of the top six teams and the official winner of the competition.
The team won a total of $5000 in prize money which was split among the five team members equally. Finalists are eligible to win any of the 37 scholarship prizes available at the competition, coming to a total of $100,000. The winning team will receive $20,000.