16 October 2014

Sunway College’s A Level students win gold and silver at International Mathematical Olympiad 2014

Two students from Sunway College recently returned home with gold and silver medals from the 10-day International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO) 2014 held in Cape Town, South Africa. A-Level students Anzo Teh Zhao Yang won the gold whilst Khong Yi Kye secured the silver. Collectively with three others, the Malaysia team ranked 23rd. It is Malaysia’s best international ranking ever attained since it first participated in 1995. Anzo together with another teammate contributed to the country’s second and third gold since the first IMO gold in 2011.

The IMO, an extremely intensive and competitive mathematics competition, is one of the oldest, biggest and most prestigious of all the international science Olympiads. Participants are tested with questions ranging from precalculus to other mathematical branches not conventionally covered in schools or at university level, such as projective and complex geometry, functional equations and well-grounded number theory, of which extensive knowledge of theorems is required.

The IMO Malaysia team’s excursion to Cape Point in South Africa – Sunway College’s A-level students Khong Yi Kye (second from left) and Anzo Teh Zhao Yang (fourth from left)

Throughout the two-day contest in Cape Town, 560 participants from 101 countries were required “to write solutions to 3 problems involving complex situations each day within the given four and half hours,” described Khong. “The easier questions may involve answers of half a page-long while the difficult ones are most likely answers of a few pages. One of my teammates actually wrote an 11-page long answer to a question” added Anzo.

Each question carries 7 points. At the international competition, only half of the total contestants were awarded with medals. 49 gold medals were awarded to participants with score points of 29 and above, and 113 silvers for scorers with points between 22 and 28; while 133 bronze medals were presented to scorers with points between 16 and 21.

Before the IMO, both Anzo and Khong were required to undergo the selection process which included a number of tests through four selection camps. Throughout the process, they pitted against 10,000 Malaysians while receiving training from former participants and Mathematics lecturers from local universities. They were among the six short-listed finalists to represent Malaysia at Cape Town.

From left: Sunway College’s A-level Students Anzo Teh Zhao Yang and Khong Yi Kye

The two lads, who aspire to be actuaries, are passionate in Mathematics and since their primary school days have participated in various mathematics competitions. In 2013, both of them took part in the Sunway A-Level Math and Logic Challenge. Khong emerged champion and received a full tuition fee waiver for his current studies in subject combinations of Chemistry, Mathematics, Further Mathematics and Physics. Anzo won an individual prize of a partial tuition fee bursary in the same competition and recently started his A-level programme with subject combinations of Mathematics, Economics, Further Mathematics and Physics.

On why the IMO winners chose the Sunway College A-level programme, both replied that the scholarship and bursary were key factors. In addition, on-campus facilities and student activities were other attractions for joining Sunway College.

Both Anzo and Khong are more than just mathematicians. Khong has been an ‘All Star’, A Level student ambassador since the start of his programme at Sunway College. As student ambassador, he has the opportunity to help organise student events. The multi-talented Anzo has a music diploma in piano and is eyeing to join the Sunway All Star, choir and toastmasters club.

Sunway College is proud and pleased to celebrate this outstanding international accomplishment by Anzo and Khong.

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