DHS students earn honors at mathematical contest

Four Decorah High School students earned distinguished honors at the 2022 High School Mathematical Contest in Modeling (HiMCM) recently.

Four Decorah High School students earned distinguished honors–and the highest designation earned by a team from Iowa–in the 2022 High School Mathematical Contest in Modeling (HiMCM).

The team of Lucas Arendt, Gabriel Hiner, Anders Lovstuen, and Aidan Nalean-Carlson earned a Finalist designation, which places them in the top 7% and secures them an invitation to participate in the 9th International Mathematical Modeling Challenge (IM2C).

A total of 854 teams, with up to 4 students each, representing 362 schools and 18 countries/regions competed in the 2022 HiMCM, made possible by the Consortium for Mathematics and its Applications (COMAP). All teams worked at their own schools within the contest window of Nov. 2-15, 2022. Each high school team chose from two modeling problems offered, and then they constructed their solutions. The judges were impressed with all the teams’ creativity and ingenuity in mathematical modeling as well as their ability to explain their strategies and problem-solving techniques in clear terms.

Results of the contest were recently released.

Decorah High School had a total of 23 students participate. Earning recognition as Successful Participants include Jacob Magner, Daniel Skrade, Ethan Stravers and Max Wilson; Elsa Christman, Mason Myers and Isabella Sailor; Justin Berlage, Peter Essa, Nathaniel Myers and Henry Weis; Elayna Hook, Hayley Stowe, Nathan Swarbrick and Abbie Valkosky; and Tommy Hammel, Reid Kuehner, Brenna Parker and Amelia Wadsworth.

This year all six teams chose to address the same question: “The Need for Bees (and not just for honey).” Requirements were to develop a model to determine the population of a honeybee colony over time, conduct a sensitivity analysis to determine which factors have the greatest impact on colony size, model and predict how many hives are needed to support pollination of a 20-acre parcel of land containing crops that benefit from pollination, write a technical paper communicating their solution, and create a blog or infographic sharing their information.

Sponsor Allysen Lovstuen shared, “Once again, I am proud of all of the students who participated. This contest requires interdisciplinary thinking and perseverance. The students demonstrated strong problem-solving, critical thinking, and research and writing skills. That we had so many students willing to spend two days taking on this challenge speaks highly of them.”