A team of five Rye Neck High School students used their knowledge and critical thinking skills to solve an applied mathematics problem when they competed in Moody’s Mega Math Challenge, a national online math competition.

Juniors Olivia Dunne, Allie Liebmann, Jack Masciopinto, Marisa Santoli and Bennett Taylor, under the guidance of teacher David Grazioli, were presented with a problem, which had to be solved within a 14-hour time limit. During the competition, the students studied the issue, gathered data, stated assumptions and devised mathematical models before reporting their results in the form of a solution paper.

“After being scrutinized by more than 225 Ph.D.-level applied mathematicians, their solution paper was chosen as one of 78 to receive an Honorable Mention award, putting them in the top 8 percent of all submissions,” Grazioli said. “As a reward for their hard work and their exemplary solution, they were awarded a $1,000 scholarship to be shared equally among them.”

Rye Neck High School was among 1,121 high schools nationwide to compete in the competition. Principal Scott Mosenthal congratulated the students and commended them on their ability to work together under trying circumstances.

“Their teamwork speaks volumes about their willingness to listen to each other and recognize each other’s talents,” he said.

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