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Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences

Koopa Koo Earns High Honors

for the 2002 william lowell putnam examination


Tak-Lun "Koopa" Koo (’03) has received Honorable Mention in the 2002 William Lowell Putnam Mathematical Competition, ranking 35th among 3349 contestants from the United States and Canada. He is the first Boston College undergraduate to achieve such a high level of distinction.

The Putnam Mathematical Competition, sponsored annually by the Mathematical Association of America since 1938, was designed to stimulate a healthy rivalry in mathematical studies at the undergraduate level. It consists of a twelve question examination, administered in two, three-hour sessions each December.

Associate Professor William Keane, a former Chairman of the Department and the Advisor of the Putnam Examination Problem Solving Group, notes that "none of the problems (on the examination) is routine, but a proper solution to each requires a challenging combination of mathematical insight and one's ability to connect different areas of mathematics."

Koo's achievement is both highly regarded and applauded throughout the Department.

The Putnam Mathematical Competition is one of the most prestigious competitions in the world of its kind. Koo completed his undergraduate degree in December, and will complete his (combined Bachelor's and) Master's Degree this summer. He will be entering a Ph.D. program in Mathematics this Fall.

The three-person, Boston College team for the 2002 Competition was composed of Koo, Erik Jensen (’04), and Matthew Eakins (’05). The team placed 92nd among the 376 colleges and universities that competed. This is the first time that Boston College has placed in the top 100 in the Competition.

Other Boston College students competing in the Examination were Chris Lam (’05), Matthew Sequin (’04), and Paul Wenger (’04).