Sweet 16 for BYU Math

The results from the Putnam Mathematical Competition have just arrived, and they contain good news for Brigham Young University.

 

The BYU Putnam team placed 16th this year, which is the highest the team has been ranked in the past 31 years.  The last time the BYU team did this well was when team members included Gary Lawlor and Tom Hales.  (Gary Lawlor is now an accomplished professor of Mathematics Education at BYU, and Tom Hales proved the famous 400-year-old Kepler Conjecture.) 

 

On this year’s BYU Putnam team were Hiram Golze, who earned a score of 67 at the competition, Michael Griffin, who scored a 42, and Robert (Tianyi) Yang, who scored a 39.

 

Hiram’s score earned him an honorable mention, and BYU had at least five students score in the top 500. The only other school in the Intermountain region to have any student place in the top 500 was Arizona State University.

 

Other BYU high-scorers include Nick Anderson (score: 38), James Pringle (34), Ryan Murray (21), and Dustin Gerrard (20).  (The median score on the Putnam is zero.)

 

Every year, the Putnam takes place on the first Saturday in December and consists of two three-hour tests.  American and Canadian undergrads are invited to try to solve twelve problems to win scholarships and cash prizes for themselves and their schools.