Students Shine in Math Contest

Students Prove Their Skills in National Exam
Posted on 01/08/2019
NBJH students John Raub Jr., Jeehyung Yoo and Olivia Zhao shine in AMC8 contest

It’s one thing to be good at math, it’s another to prove yourself in a national competition and score among the top 1 percent of your grade. That’s exactly what happened for 8th-grader John Raub Jr. when he joined 26 other District 28 students in the American Mathematics Competition 8, a 25-question, 40-minute exam competition.

Seventh-graders Jeehyung Yoo and Olivia Zhao placed second and third at the 7th/8th-grade level, scoring in the top 5% nationally. Their scores combined with John’s made the highest three-person score yet for the district, according to Becky Heller, the Gifted and Talented Coordinator who organizes the event. The competition has individual and school awards based on student performance.

The first 10 questions on the AMC 8 “are a breeze,” John said, then, “it gets harder and harder.” He began taking the test in 5th grade and has participated each year to see how much his knowledge has grown. 

 “Math is the one thing that I’m good at. I’m proud of myself for doing so well,” John said. Not only is he measuring his knowledge, he must also be sharing it with his little brother Josh, who participated for the first time this year and earned the top score in the 5th/6th-grade level.

Olivia Zhao also comes from a family of math lovers. Olivia’s sister, Angela, scored in the top 1% when she was in 8th grade three years ago.

“Math is really fun for me,” Olivia said. “This test is competitive, which makes it more fun.”  

John, Olivia and Jeehyung will put their math skills to the test again as part of the Math Club in the MATHCOUNTS North Suburban Chapter Competition on Feb. 2. “It's the best way to put my brain to use,” Jeehyung said. “I like that math has one answer.”

Congratulations are also in order for students who participated in the 5th/6th-grade level. There was a district four-way tie for second place between Alex Dobrev, Len Livshits, Artin Kandi and Abhimanyu Khurana. Alex Faybysh placed third.