The Putnam Exam 2013
The Putnam Exam Competition is one of the most prestigious undergraduate math competitions in the U.S. and Canada. Held annually in early December, the results from 2013’s competition are in and Cal Poly's team took 36th place out of 557 participating schools. This excellent result is Cal Poly's best performance in several years.
The Putnam Exam Competition is a notoriously difficult exam taken by motivated and mathematically inclined undergraduates. The exam consists of 12 total questions, given in two three-hour sessions. Students take the exam individually and there are no calculators, notes, books, or anything of the sort to help. Each problem is scored out of ten points making 120 total possible points, however the median score this year was a one.
There were 4113 total individuals taking the exam in December of 2013. Each school selects three students to be designated as team members, and their scores determine that school’s ranking. This year Cal Poly's team consisted of: Brian Jones, who scored 30 points, ranking him 266th overall, placing him in about the 94th percentile; Matthew Rodrigues, who scored 28 points, ranking him 365th overall, placing him in the 91st percentile; and first-year student Michael Boulos, who scored 10 points, placing him in the 68th percentile.
Cal Poly had other students doing well in the exam, competing just for fun: Lumin Sperling and Tyler Jorgens each scored 10 points as well; and Derek Tietze and Michael Bower had 8 points each. Also participating were Ryan Gelstan, David Kato, Minnal Kunnan, Bradley LePlante, Donna Martin, Connor Sullivan, Christopher Hurley, BJ Yebisu, Alex Radermacher, and Trent Speier.