3 Filipino students to join International Mathematical Olympiad in Kazakhstan

January 25, 2010 10:55 pm 

MANILA, Jan. 25 — Three young math wizards will be sent to Kazakhstan to wave the Philippine flag and compete at the International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO).

“Our back-to-back medals at the IMO (in the past years) pave the way for a higher endeavor of taking mathematics to the next level…we truly believe that Filipino students, given the correct training and motivation, can make it big in the international sense,” Dr. Ester B. Ogena, director of the DOST-Science Education Institute, said.

John Russel Virata of Gideon Academy took home the grand prize at the Philippine Mathematical Olympiad (PMO) held over the weekend in Diliman, Quezon City with a cash incentive of P18,000, a medal and a trophy for his school and a chance to join the 51st IMO to be held in July.

Virata is a consistent winner in international mathematics competitions including last year’s Invitational World Youth Mathematics Intercities Competition held in Durban, South Africa where he won a bronze medal and the Philippine International Mathematics Competition conducted in Iloilo City where he took home a gold medal.

Zheng Rong Wu of Zamboanga Chong Hua High School and Aldric Cristoval Reyes of Chiang Kai Shek College, placed second and third, respectively.

The three are recipients of the Youth Excellence in Science Award, an annual recognition that the Department of Science and Technology gives to students who obtain gold, silver, or bronze medals from international mathematics and science competitions.

The winners stood out from 3,500 students all over the country from 12 regions who all went through the qualifying and area stages of the contest.

The PMO, organized by the Mathematical Society of the Philippines, is the oldest mathematical contest in the country where the representatives to the IMO, the hardest and most prestigious mathematics competition in the world, are being chosen.

Last year, the Philippines won a bronze medal at the 50th IMO held in Bremen , Germany through Carmela Lao of St. Jude Catholic School.

Ogena congratulated the winners of the 12th PMO, expressing hope that the Philippines will once again take home a medal from the IMO.

She said competitions like the PMO brings out the best in students as it encourages them to be imaginative, creative and sharp in solving problems.

“It is our hope that the students would put their talents into good use and pursue a career in science and mathematics," she added. (PNA) LAP/MPC

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