Winter and math problems go together at York


Above: Students at the math camp, with four of the five coaches. Three of the coaches are kneeling in the front row and one is on the right, back row.

York played host to 15 math whiz-kids at the recent Canadian Mathematical Society winter math camp. Prof. Tom Salisbury, Chair, Department of Mathematics & Statistics, Faculty of Arts and Faculty of Pure & Applied Science, sent the following account.

For the fourth time, York has hosted the Canadian Mathematical Society”s winter math camp. This year, 15 gifted high-school students spent a week at York in early January learning mathematics and honing their problem-solving skills. The students came from across Canada – from Newfoundland to British Columbia. They were supervised by five coaches, also from across the country.

Students were selected for the camp on the basis of their performance on a variety of mathematics competitions. Each student hopes to earn one of six spots on Canada”s International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO) team. The IMO is the pinnacle of the mathematics competitions written by thousands of high-school students throughout Canada. It was held in Canada in 1995, also at York. This year”s IMO will take place in Tokyo, Japan, from July 7-13.

The winter math camp was organized by the Department of Mathematics & Statistics and Bethune College. Students stayed in Bethune and Calumet residences, and worked together through morning, afternoon and evening sessions.