The M3S Competition (Massey Manawatu Maths and Stats Competition for Year 12 Students) was held on the afternoon of Friday 30 June this year.
It brought together 60 students from eight schools around the region, so we (FHS) were joined by teams from Waiopehu College, Feilding High School, Whanganui High School, Palmerston North Girls’ High School, Awatapu College, Dannevirke High School, and Palmerston North Boys’ High School.
The competition involves teams of three Year 12 students who must answer Mathematics and Statistics questions without the use of calculators. The questions aim to emphasise problem solving skills and the ability to work as a team.
Freyberg High School took second place with the team of Connor Dunlop, Lea Meutzel and Jacob Spillane after a very close competition. The winning team was from Whanganui High School.
MC, Dr Richard Brown, of the Institute of Fundamental Sciences said, “the competition provides an exciting opportunity for students to experience the kind of competitive environment usually reserved for sporting competitions – but in an academic context.”
“They meet other like-minded students from a wide range different schools, and also get insight into what it’s like in the university world, with opportunities to meet and mingle with working mathematicians and Massey students. The competition provides students motivation to excel at mathematics, and encouragement to continue their mathematical passion into university study.
Head of the Institute of Fundamental Sciences Professor Martin Hazelton said good mathematical training can provide a wealth of opportunities for students.
“A good mathematical training opens lots of doors for students, with prospective employers handling ever increasing amounts of data. Mathematics and statistics provide the tools to understand these data, to tease out important patterns from a mass of numbers. The applications are endless, from predicting the stock market, to unravelling genetic information in order to personalise medical treatments.
“It is little wonder that mathematicians and statisticians are continually ranked in the top five most desirable jobs by international career analysts.”
The M3S competition programme was established in 2014 as a promotional drive to encourage students to study mathematics and statistics at the University. Massey mathematics and statistics students marked the questions.