The Department of Mathematics and Applied Mathematics recently played host to 10 of the finest high school maths students from around the country. They attended a five day Mathematics Olympiad Training Camp at UCT, with the hope that they would be chosen to be one of the team of six, to represent South Africa at the International Mathematical Olympiad to be held later this year in Tokyo.
The group included four students selected to represent South Africa at the Pan African Mathematics Olympiad in Maputo where they walked off with the top honours.
The camp was divided into morning, afternoon and evening sessions, and involved daily four and half hour tests conducted under conditions similar to those expected at the International Mathematical Olympiad, as well as lectures and problem solving workshops.
According to Professor John Webb, of the Department of Mathematics and Applied Mathematics, the 10 pupils were chosen on the basis of the nationwide Old Mutual Mathematical Talent Search, which involved an estimated 6 000 schools.
Webb said: "What makes this year's Olympiad camp particularly special is that for the first time since its inception, the ratio of females to males in the group is equal."