Release Date: April 28, 2014

LTU students do well in international math modeling competition

By Ruth Favro

Daniel (Orlando) Anderegg, David Inwald, and Anqi Du finished in the Honorable Mention category of  the math modeling contest.

Nine dedicated Lawrence Tech students on three teams signed on for the marathon 96-hour Mathematical Contest in Modeling (MCM) this year. The 2014 contest, which took place Feb. 6-10 on campuses around the world, is sponsored by the Consortium for Mathematics and its Applications (

The teams were challenged to model and solve one of two applied problems. Problem A asked students to model the performance of the “Keep Right Except to Pass Rule” in light and heavy traffic, analyze its effectiveness, and consider how an intelligent system for the roadway would change the analysis. Problem B, “College Coaching Legends,” asked students to determine a mathematical model for choosing the best five college coaches in the last century, male or female, in each of three sports. Our teams all chose Problem A, modeling traffic flow and writing a computer simulation for their models.

Mark Kenney, Jose Rodrigo Sanchez-Vicarte, and Steven Gonzalez finished in the Honorable Mention category of the math modeling contest.

Intense research, massive teamwork, combined with math, computer, science/engineering, and writing skills, produced research papers to compete against the papers from over 6,700 teams from the United States, China, and 16 other countries. More than 80 percent of the papers were submitted from China. The key to rising to higher levels in the judging of the research paper is good writing and editing, with clear organization throughout, from the executive summary on page 1 to the conclusion.

The categories for judging are Outstanding and Finalist, both in the top 1 percent, Meritorious (the top 9 percent), Honorable Mention (top 31 percent) and Successful Participant (top 57 percent).

The results are now in – LTU had two Honorable Mention teams and one Successful Participant team:

• Anqi Du, Daniel (Orlando) Anderegg, and David Inwald received Honorable Mention.
• Jose Rodrigo Sanchez-Vicarte, Mark Kenney, and Steven Gonzalez received Honorable Mention.
• Braden Lyford, Ceré Rettig, and Connor Seay received Successful Participant.

LTU had the two highest-ranking teams in Michigan doing Problem A! The ranks of Successful Participants included teams from the University of Michigan, MIT, and University of California-Berkeley. For Problem B, two teams from University of Michigan were in the Honorable Mention category.

Ceré Rettig, Connor Seay, and Braden Lyford finished in the Successful Participant category of the math modeling contest.

The students’ majors in this interdisciplinary group range through mathematics, computer science, computer engineering, mechanical engineering, and game art.

We are very proud of our students’ efforts in this four-day marathon, dedicating their time while keeping their commitments to classes and other work obligations. The students have been invited to give presentations of their papers at the Mathematical Association of America-Michigan Section annual meeting in May.

The LTU Math Club and the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science sponsored the contest. Principal faculty advisor was Professor Ruth Favro, with help from Professors Guang-Chong Zhu and Chris Cartwright. Many thanks go to everyone who helped coordinate this production, including the College of Arts and Sciences dean’s office, New York Bagel for the donation of bagels, and LTU Campus Safety for weekend help with rooms.


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