North County Freshman Qualifies for USA Junior Math Olympiad
Jack Andraka, a ninth grader in the STEM program at North County High School, has qualified for the 2012 USA Junior Math Olympiad.
Students who perform well on the AMC 10 or AMC 12 exams are invited to participate in the American Invitational Mathematics Examination (AIME).
Jack earned a 132/150.
Jack recieved a score of 13/15 on AIME which is the highest score in our region of Maryland and Virginia. The AIME score is muliplied by 10 and added to the AMC score. The cutoff score for the Olympiad this year is 204. Jack recieved a 262 and is one of only 74 ninth graders in the country to advance to the United States of America Mathematical Olympiad (USAMO). Students who do exceptionally well on the USAMO (typically around 30 students) are invited to go to the Mathematical Olympiad Summer Program (MOSP or, more commonly, MOP), and six students are selected from the top 12 scorers on the USAMO (through yet another exam, the Team Selection Test—TST) to form the United States Math Team.
There are certain rewards for doing well on the AMC tests. For the AMC 8, a perfect score may earn a book prize or a plaque (Jack earned this in middle school). For the AMC 10 and AMC 12, a high score earns recognition (in particular, colleges look at the names of these exceptional young mathmeticians). In addition, high scorers on the AMC 10 and AMC 12 qualify to take the next round of competitions, the three-hour long American Invitational Mathematics Examination (AIME), typically held in March or April. Any student who scores in the top 1 percent on the AMC 10, scores in the top 5 percent on the AMC 12, scores at least 100 points on the AMC 12, or scores at least 120 on the AMC 10 is invited to take the AIME. The answer to each of the 15 questions on the AIME is an integer between 0 and 999 inclusive, so while it is technically a multiple-choice test, it is not one in practice.
The combined scores of the AMC and the AIME are used to determine those that will be invited back to take a nine-hour, two-day, six-problem session of proofs known as the United States of America Mathematical Olympiad (USAMO). Approximately 30 students are selected based on their USAMO performance to be trained at the Mathematical Olympiad Summer Program, or MOSP. All students must be in ninth grade or higher to be admitted into MOSP.
During this summer camp, a series of exams are given to finally pick the six-member U.S. Mathematics Team. The current head coach of the U.S. Math Team is Zuming Feng from Phillips Exeter Academy.
Major universities such as MIT are beginning to ask applying students for their AMC scores.