Media Release – January 18, 2019
Canadian Mathematical Society

Record Number of Students Write the 2018 Canadian Open Mathematics Challenge

OTTAWA, Ontario — The Canadian Mathematical Society (CMS) is pleased to announce the results of the 2018 Canadian Open Mathematics Challenge (COMC). The COMC is supported by the Actuarial Profession, particularly the Casualty Actuarial Society (CAS) and the Society of Actuaries (SOA). More than 8,000 students wrote the Open on November 8, 2018. For the 2018 COMC, in partnership with the Award Scheme Development and Accreditation Network (ASDAN – Beijing), more than 900 high school students in China registered to write the competition.

The COMC is the initial qualifier for the Canadian Mathematical Olympiad (CMO), which will take place on March 27, 2019. Students can also qualify to write the CMO through a Repêchage competition which will take place between February 13 and 20, 2019. The COMC and the Repêchage provide opportunities for selection to the Canadian Team to the European Girls’ Mathematical Olympiad (EGMO).

CMS-COMC Committee Chair, Dr. Robert Woodrow (Calgary) says:

“Participation in this year’s contest demonstrates significant growth in the COMC both nationally and internationally, with the addition of students in China writing through collaboration with ASDAN. Contest problems are not like school assessments. Creating good programs that are new, interesting, and challenging is a difficult task. Many students found some of the problems quite challenging and the committee is amazed each year at the creativity of the students. Invariably correct solutions appear which we did not anticipate when the contest was created. The length of some student’s solutions to some problems may have meant they had less time to attempt other problems, this year. My thanks go out to the marking teams, to Crowdmark for providing a platform for distributed grading, and to the COMC committee and the COMC problems committee for their hard work as volunteers.”

The Society entered into a joint sponsorship agreement with the CAS and the SOA in 2017 which encompasses the CMS competition cycle, beginning with the COMC and ending with the International Mathematical Olympiad.

“The Casualty Actuarial Society is proud to continue supporting the Canadian Open Mathematics Challenge, which demonstrates the amazing capacity of students around the world to apply their mathematical and critical thinking skills,” said CAS President Jim Christie, FCAS.

“The COMC’s mission mirrors our own efforts to encourage students with a passion for mathematics to consider the challenging and rewarding path of an actuarial career.”

The Society of Actuaries (SOA) President Jim Glickman, FSA, MAAA, said “The SOA is pleased to once again collaborate with the Casualty Actuarial Society (CAS) in sponsoring the Canadian Mathematical Society’s Canadian Open Mathematics Challenge. We are pleased that a record number of 8,000 students participated this past year. The SOA is glad to be able to support students in their interests in mathematics, especially in fostering students’ interest in pursuing actuarial careers.”

More than 350 high schools participated in the competition, which was marked electronically using Crowdmark again this year.

2018 COMC Winners

Canadian Students

Gold Freddie Zhao, ICAE, United States
Silver Victor Rong – Marc Garneau Collegiate Institute, ON
Bronze Howard Halim – University of Toronto Schools, ON
Eric Shen – University of Toronto Schools, ON
Edgar Wang – Marianopolis College, QC
William Zhao – Richmond Hill High School, ON
Honourable Mentions    Yundi George Duan – Western Canada High School, AB
Thomas Guo – Phillips Exeter Academy, United States
Michael Li – Marc Garneau Collegiate Institute, ON

International Students

Gold Andres Rico III Gonzales, Math Trainers Guild of Philippines, Philippines
Silver Moses Mayer, Surya Institute, Indonesia
Bronze Jingyue Zhang, Shanghai High School, Shanghai
Honourable Mentions    Adithya Balachandran, Bergen County Academics, United States

For more information on top scorers in each province and different grade levels, click here.

About the Canadian Mathematical Society (CMS)

Founded in 1945, the Canadian Mathematical Society (CMS) promotes the advancement, discovery, learning and application of mathematics. The CMS promotes mathematics through a rich array of activities including scientific meetings, publications, awards, prizes, grants, camps and competitions.

For more information on the COMC, please contact:

For more information on the COMC, please contact:

Dr. Robert Woodrow
Chair, CMS-COMC Committee
Dept. Of Mathematics, University of Calgary
Tel: (403) 220-6325
or Sarah Watson
Manager, Meeting & Events
Canadian Mathematical Society
Tel: (613) 733-2662 ext. 733