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People

Lincoln-Way West students excel in 14-hour math challenge

From March 3 to March 4, 10 Lincoln-Way West seniors competed in the annual MathWorks Math Modeling Challenge (M3C).

The M3C is a national competition for high school juniors and seniors and is sponsored by the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics. Two teams of five students entered the competition in an effort to win the $100,000 scholarship. This year, 912 teams from around the country participated in the M3C competition. 

When groups were assembled and ready, they logged in to the M3C website and downloaded the scenario. They were given the problem stems, some research that had been started for them and a few other helpful pieces of information.

Each group had 14 hours from the time the scenario was downloaded to research the problems, develop solutions based on mathematical modeling and write a report that offered a solution to the problems.

The team of Lincoln-Way West students (code name: Team SLACK) was comprised of Sara Swanberg, Luke James, Andrew Hunsaker, Connor Kettelson and Kevin Beallis, while the other team of Lincoln-Way West students (code name: Team Bobby) was comprised of Bobby Valiska, Nick Ruskowsky, Joe Meskin, John Stagner and Vincent Abella.

Both teams were supervised by Lincoln-Way West mathematics teacher Tim Barry.

A panel of judges evaluated all entries from all 912 teams and decided that the entry from Team SLACK was strong enough to advance to the second round of judging. Only 185 teams in the nation made it to the second round of judging, which placed Team SLACK in the top 20 percent nationally.

Unfortunately, during the second round of judging, Team SLACK was not selected to advance to the final six teams.

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