Student mathematicians put to the test at SEAMC 18 Singapore
By Won Young Yoon, Grade 12, and Meher Pahuja, Anvita Bhagavatula, and Joanna Tasmin, Grade 11, East Campus
We often joke amongst ourselves that SEAMC is SEASAC Math. But in fact, that was exactly what it was conceptualised to be. SEAMC’s founder, Steve Warry, envisioned math being conducted as a spectator sport. He believed that it had the same potential as sports to generate spirit and bring communities of people together. At SEAMC 18, we aimed to honour this ideology.
This year, the South East Asian Mathematics Competition (SEAMC) gathered 777 students and 151 teachers in four locations - Seoul, Beijing, Manila, and Singapore. With 240 participants participating in nine intense rounds, SEAMC Singapore was this year’s largest qualifying round for the World Mathematics Championships. The competition comprised a variety of engaging activities involving thought-provoking mathematics, held both indoors and out. The participants were expected not only expected to think deeply about mathematics, but also collaborate with one another. As a result, this competition cultivated innovative mathematical awareness while bringing people together through the shared love for the subject.
This year marked East Campus' first time hosting the competition, a decade after Dover hosted it in 2008. Our school’s SEAMC Club was formed in August 2016, a result of our persistent advertisement through posters, emails, speeches in assemblies, and conversations with Middle and High School Mathematics teachers. In three months, the club grew to over 50 members. The organisers (Anvita Bhagavathula, Joanna Tasmin, Meher Pahuja, and Won Young Yoon) worked closely with one another to produce a training programme that would allow UWCSEA participants to excel. Tasked with preparing the weekly sessions while maintaining the ethos of the competition, they aimed to incite a passion for mathematics by devising a programme that, in addition to challenging the participants for the competition, also allowed students to explore the elegance of mathematics in unfamiliar contexts.
There is no doubt that this year’s competition was the most successful to date for the UWCSEA East participants; they embodied the ideals that are the very essence of this competition: collaboration, creativity, and challenge.
Ranking second overall, our school’s achievements are particularly commendable: Arunav Maheshwari (G8) was ranked 1st overall in the Junior category, and Kartik Shah (G11) ranked 2nd in the Senior category. We also had two students (Arunav Maheshwari, Saransh Malik) in the Junior bracket and five students (Aoi Izumi, Nishant Kumar Singhal, Shubham Bhargava, Siming Ji, Tatsuki Kuze) in the Senior bracket get into the Codebreaker finals. These were UWCSEA Singapore’s best achievements over the past ten years, unprecedented feats in the school’s history.
Following this success, we are excited to announce that the SEAMC Club will continue to train future participants.
We invite you to engage with this group of hardworking mathematicians and welcome anyone who is ready to embark on this challenging yet rewarding journey.
"It is not knowledge but the act of learning, not possession but the act of getting there, which grants the greatest enjoyment." - C F Gauss