Students Neyan Sezhian, Erik Wu originate James Clemens Math Tournament

MADISON – With avid interest in mathematics, students Neyan Sezhian and Erik Wu couldn’t accept the status quo. They took positive action that will benefit many students in North Alabama.

“Most middle-school mathematics tournaments are located more than 1.5 hours away, mostly in Birmingham, with almost no activity locally,” Sezhian said. “The James Clemens Mathematics Tournament was founded to increase interest for competition mathematics in the district.”

“Around four months into tournament planning, we approached Dr. Kristin Hartland to serve as our faculty sponsor, who guided us through various logistical steps required to successfully implement our tournament,” Neyan said.

“Erik and Neyan were truly the backbone to this amazing tournament,” Hartland said.

The James Clemens Math Tournament was held on March 30. “Middle-school students from emailed schools in North Alabama that were currently enrolled in their respective math team programs were all eligible to participate in this tournament,” Neyan said.

About 150 students from four schools participated in the tournament. Competition levels ranged in grades 6-8.

After registration from 8:30 a.m. in James Clemens Landing, contestants waited in the cafeteria before proceeding to assigned classrooms for written tests. The team round at 11:45 a.m. ran for one hour. The tournament ended with an awards ceremony.

For question writing, Sezhian and Wu relied largely on personal experience from past mathematics tournaments, along with knowledge of competition mathematics. They wrote all questions, involving multiple revisions.

In fundraising, Sezhian and Wu received direct financial sponsorships from restaurants, like John Smith’s Subs and Marco’s Pizza. “PPG offered assistance through a grant application program. Taco Mama offered to cater lunch for tournament volunteers from James Clemens,” Hartland said.

“As tournament sponsor, I felt that Erik and Neyan went above and beyond to ensure this tournament was a success,” Hartland said. “I was responsible for the paperwork, but Erik and Neyan did absolutely everything else including fundraising, writing grants, making copies, creating answer documents, recruiting volunteers, writing numerous emails, ordering medals and trophies and more.”

“The middle-school advisors were all so grateful for having the opportunity to attend a local tournament, and the kids were eager to discover the solutions to the problems after each round,” Wu said.

Originally, the tournament was scheduled for Jan. 20; however, the ice storm forced Sezhian and Wu to find another available Saturday open to a majority of students, Hartland said. Unfortunately, several schools who accepted Jan. 20 could not attend on March 30, resulting in 100-plus less students than anticipated.

“This ultimately did not affect the excitement of the tournament,” Hartland said.

“I’m always in awe of the many students who take on leadership roles serving our district, like Erik Wu and Neyan Sezhian,” Dr. Ed Nichols, Madison City Schools Superintendent, said. “These two juniors from James Clemens . . . ran a district math tournament for middle-schoolers . . . Their dedication was instrumental in shaping this initiative.”

Bob Jones High School

CMSgt. Ellis Clark awarded title of Drill Master

Events

Huntsville Botanical Garden and UAH partner for Shakespeare in the Garden

Madison

Chess league honors Epling as ‘Coach of the Year’

Harvest

Luna Koi to bring its vibe to ‘Sounds of Summer’

Bob Jones High School

Seeing students as rewards, Word selected Midtown’s ‘Teacher of the Year’

Huntsville

Pre-K Center selects Parameswaran as top teacher

Discovery Middle School

Robotics team, Say Watt!?!, takes FIRST LEGO awards in California

Harvest

TARCOG lands $1.5-million grant from EPA for cleanup

FRONT PAGE FEATURED

Mental Skills Coach Assists Team To National Championship Game- Roger Kitchen Builds Character

Bob Jones High School

Journey welcomes Ben Smith as Assistant Principal, Athletic Director

Madison

Chandrakasem, Koswoski excel in DAR essay contests

Harvest

American Legion, VFW to retire flags on Flag Day

Madison

Stundtner proves skills as Midtown’s ‘Staff Member of the Year’

James Clemens High School

Guo, Mysore, Saha dominate awards at regional, state science fairs

Harvest

Madison Hospital names Brandon Jones ‘Employee of the Year’

Bob Jones High School

MCS to present ‘Youth Mental Health First Aid’ sessions

Digital Version

Digital version of The Madison Record – June 12, 2024

Events

Annual Juneteenth Festival returns to Big Spring Park Saturday

Bob Jones High School

Braden Booth Named Mr. Baseball, Super All-State, Class 7A All-State

Harvest

Low-key races (on foot and couch) pivotal for Rotary’s ‘Parrots 0.5K’

Bob Jones High School

Mill Creek names Deberry as outstanding staff employee

Bob Jones High School

Madison Public Library readies for Summer Reading experience

James Clemens High School

Moore honored as ‘Staff Member of the Year’ at James Clemens

Harvest

Madison City Community Orchestra to honor D-Day’s 80th anniversary

x