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‘Mathletes’ to Represent Hawai‘i at National MATHCOUNTS

March 14, 2018, 9:30 AM HST (Updated March 14, 2018, 10:07 AM)
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Hawai‘i Electric Companies announced that in a field of 38 competitors from middle schools across Hawai‘i Island, O‘ahu and Maui, Minjae Seo and Felicity Zhou of Washington Middle along with Jared Lo of Punahou and Taylor Ann Agena of Highlands Intermediate excelled in both the written and oral portions of the State MATHCOUNTS competition to emerge as the top “mathletes” during the half-day event held at Kamehameha Schools on Saturday, March 10, 2018.

Hawaiian Electric VP-power supply Bob Isler with the Hawai‘i MATHCOUNTS team: Coach Sung Park, Taylor Ann Agena, Jared Lo, Felicity Zhou, Minjae Seo and Barry Nakamoto of HSPEEF.

The top school, determined by individual team members’ scores, was Washington Middle whose coach, Sung Park, will accompany all four students to the National MATHCOUNTS, Saturday through Tuesday, May 12 to 15, 2018, in Washington, D.C. where they will represent Hawai‘i. This year marks the eighth time Coach Park has led the Hawai‘i MATHCOUNTS team.

Established in 1983, MATHCOUNTS is a national enrichment, coaching and competition program that promotes middle school mathematics achievement. During the events, student “mathletes” in grades six, seven and eight compete in a series of timed rounds as individuals and as team members to demonstrate their math problem-solving, plus analytical and logical thinking skills.

In the written portion of the math competition, the top 10 students with the highest scores were (10th) Kyle Ching, ‘Iolani; (ninth) Remi Kuba, Punahou; (eighth) Felicity Zhou, Washington Middle; (seventh) Tamlyn Horiuchi, Highlands Intermediate; (sixth) Noah Chung, Punahou; (fifth), Jordan Wong, Washington Middle; (fouth) Adam Inamasa, Washington Middle; (third) Taylor Ann Agena, Highlands Intermediate); (second) Jared Lo, Punahou and in first place was Minjae Seo, Washington Middle.

In the oral competition, students have a maximum of 45 seconds to answer math questions without the use of a calculator. Agena placed fourth, Lo came in third with Zhou in second while Seo won first place, effectively qualifying them for the Hawai‘i team.

Team awards also were handed to (eighth) Seabury Hall, (seventh) Waiākea Intermediate, (sixth) Kamehameha Middle Schools, (fifth) Highlands Intermediate, (fouth) Kapolei Middle, (third) ‘Iolani, (second) Punahou and (first) Washington Middle.

For more than 30 years, Hawaiian Electric has been the presenting sponsor of the O‘ahu Chapter and State MATHCOUNTS competitions through a grant from the HEI Charitable Foundation to the Hawai‘i Society of Professional Engineers Educational Foundation (HSPEEF) which organizes both events with support from Kamehameha Schools and the Hawai‘i Department of Education. HSPEEF is a nonprofit whose mission is to provide support for educational programs that will further opportunities for Hawai‘i’s future engineers.

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For more information on the local MATHCOUNTS events, write to Barry Nakamoto at bnakamoto@covanta.org.

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