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Harrison Student Focuses on Math Competitions

School

Harrison Student Focuses on Math Competitions

Sam Arvin

It would not be an exaggeration to say that Agustin Garcia is a star math student.

Garcia, a senior, recently took multiple math exams, earning very high scores and almost being eligible for the national Math Olympiad team.

First, he took the Indiana Math League tests.

The Indiana Math League is just in Indiana, and Garcia received the highest score on it.

The test consists of six contests, with each containing six short-answer questions that must be solved in 30 minutes.

The questions range from algebra, geometry, trigonometry, and other pre-calculus topics.

But Garcia didn’t stop there.

There is another set of math tests, labeled the American Mathematics Competition, which is nationwide.

The AMC gives test takers 75 minutes to answer 25 questions, which also covers all types of mathematics, aside from calculus.

Garcia received a high enough score on that test to be eligible to take the American Invitational Mathematics Exam.

He was in the top 5 percent of scorers, to be exact.

For the AIME, there are only 15 questions, but test takers have three hours to finish.

They are described as being much more difficult questions that cannot be answered by simply guessing.

Plus, calculators are not allowed.

His score was high enough on the AIME that he was able to take the United States of America Mathematics Olympiad, or USAMO.

USAMO is even more tough. It’s a six-question, two-day, nine-hour test that involves proofs and essays.

The results of the test are what determines the six people for the International Mathematics Olympiad.

Garcia has been taking the AMC tests since eighth grade.

In ninth grade he was almost eligible, and finally in 11th he succeeded.

He is planning on taking the test again this year, which will be his final time.

“I studied a lot earlier on in middle school and freshman year, and then sophomore and junior year I didn’t practice too much,” Garcia said. “It’s kind of like getting older. I feel I can think better now than I could three years ago, even though I have the same knowledge it developed [more].”

Since he is multiple years ahead of the average math student, Garcia is currently doing an Independent Study in Real Analysis with Mr. Klumpe.

He describes it as another calculus class, but from a different, more rigorous perspective.

Garcia will most likely involve math and science with his future career as well.