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Golden Arrow

The student news site of Woodbridge High School

Golden Arrow

The student news site of Woodbridge High School

Golden Arrow

Mu Alpha Theta Wins Big at the Berkeley Math Tournament

Mu Alpha Theta members show their dedication and passion for math by placing second in the Berkeley Math Tournament
Niki Hamedani
The captain and 3 teammates smile for a photo after another successful team meeting!

On Jan. 13-14, Mu Alpha Theta (MAT) took second place out of 178 teams in the Power Round of the Berkeley Math Tournament (BMT). The Power Round took place online and was asynchronous.   

Sophomore and Theta captain Audrey Huang explained the challenges of the Power Round. 

“They gave us two days to do all the problems,” Huang said. “They’re proof-based on a single topic and the topic was like zero-knowledge proofs, which is basically like proving something to someone without giving any information away.”

Senior and MAT president Katherine Hua comments on how proud she is of the team’s win, one of the most significant ones in recent years. 

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“That was really an incredible accomplishment especially because we kind of scraped up a team together a little bit last minute, but they did super super well and we’re all very proud of them. And this is probably the first time we’ve ever placed as a team on the podium in any math competition that we did so far,” Hua said.

The MAT club is filled with motivated, high-achieving students passionate about math. They meet weekly on Fridays at lunch in K109 to practice challenging problems together. 

“In club meetings, we like to explore what types of math there are outside of the classroom, so we do a lot of things that I guess we don’t normally don’t cover in enhanced math classes and honors math classes at Woodbridge [High],” Hua said. “So we do a lot of competitive math [where] we learn how to solve different types of problems creatively using new methods of problem-solving.”

In addition to placing second in the Berkeley Math Tournament, many MAT club members have performed extremely well in the American Mathematics Competitions (AMC), qualifying for the American Invitational Mathematics Examination (AIME). There are four qualifiers for AIME in MAT, including Audrey Huang, Marissa Huang, Katherine Hua and Andrew Kao. 

“I feel pretty proud especially because in previous years, we didn’t have as many qualifiers. We didn’t have as many people who tried to take the test, so it’s nice to see that more people are trying, and regardless of how well they scored, they’re still I guess trying and exploring something new,” Hua said. “I’m proud of that and hopefully next year, we can keep our streak going,” Hua said.

With the California State University Long Beach Math Day at the Beach (CSULB) competition coming up on March 23, MAT hopes for another big win. They plan to focus their meetings on preparation for the competition, practicing problem sets from old exams at Math Day at the Beach and mimicking the testing environment. 

“Last year, at CSULB’s Math Day at the Beach, we actually did pretty well. We were close to winning third,” Hua said.

Sophomore and Mu captain Alexander Miller expresses his hopes to improve as a team in the upcoming competition, showing MAT’s growth. 

“We have a lot of the same people [in the club] and we’ve just had more time to learn math and we’ll probably be better,” Miller said. 

Hua adds that she wants to leave the team in the hands of leaders who will continue to make MAT a strong academic representation of Woodbridge High. 

“I hope to just ensure that this club will keep on going and running at full steam with our future leaders next year when the seniors are gone. I hope that people [continue to explore] their interest with competitive math and other types of math,” Hua said.

Students looking for an opportunity to join this community of committed and competitive mathematicians can reach out to Kristie Donavan, the club advisor of MAT, at [email protected].

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About the Contributors
Danbi Lee
Danbi Lee, Features A Editor
Hi! My name is Danbi, and I'm the Features A Editor at the Golden Arrow. I'm a junior, and this is my second year in Advanced Journalism. I can't wait to interview people around campus and hear about students' various experiences. One of my goals this year is to get to know the Golden Arrow staff better. I hope to continue to write stories that help represent the different groups we have on campus!
Niki Hamedani
Niki Hamedani, Writer
Hi! Im Niki and I'm one of your 23-24 golden arrow writers! :)