Math Contest Held at Cumberland University




Eighty-two students from Middle Tennessee area high schools participated in the 63rd annual American Mathematics Contest hosted by the Cumberland University Mathematics Department and the Abelian Group (Student Chapter of the Mathematical Association of America).  The contest was held on Wednesday, February 22, 2012.  The students competed for Cumberland University Scholarships as well as other national awards.  The purpose of the contest, which covers high school mathematics, is to spur interest in mathematics and develop talent through the excitement of friendly competition at problem solving in a timed format. The contest was divided into two categories:  the AMC 10 for students less than 17.5 years of age who are not entering 11th or 12th grades and the AMC 12 open to any high school student under the age of 19.5 years. 


The AMC 10 and the AMC 12 are part of a series of contests sponsored each year by the Mathematical Association of America, through their program, the American Mathematics Competitions.  The AMC offers the only math competition series in the country leading to the United States of America Mathematical Olympiad (USAMO) and the Mathematical Olympiad Summer Program (MOSP). From this group of students, the AMC sends the highly competitive USA Team to the prestigious annual International Mathematical Olympiad.  The AMC program includes:


American Mathematics Contest 8 (AMC 8)                           Grades 6-8                              November

American Mathematics Contest 10 (AMC 10)                       Grades 10 & below                 February

American Mathematics Contest 12 (AMC 12)                       Grades 12 & below                 February

American Invitational Mathematics Examination (AIME)    All who qualify                       March-April

USA Mathematical Olympiad            (USAMO)                              All who qualify                       late April

Mathematical Olympiad Summer Program (MOSP)              Qualify thru USAMO             June

International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO)                                    Top 6 from USAMO/MOSP  July


Students from seven Middle Tennessee high schools participated in the contest hosted at Cumberland University for 2012, including Mt. Juliet High School, McGavock Comprehensive High School, Ravenwood High School, Davidson Academy, Watertown High School, Lebanon High School and Brentwood High School. The top three scorers on the AMC 10 at Cumberland were awarded $500 scholarships.  Third place went to Steven Sheffey from Lebanon High School, with Joyce Kang from Brentwood High School taking second place, and first prize going to Gene Xijie Li from Ravenwood High School.  Cumberland also awarded $1000 scholarships to the top four scorers on the AMC 12 for 2012. Sean- Michael Tibbs and Chase Buscherfeld from Mt. Juliet High School tied for third prize, Austin Cook had the second highest score, while Ryan Downs earned the highest score on the AMC 12 this year. Both Austin and Ryan are from Mt. Juliet High School as well.


In addition to the testing and presentation of awards, students were treated to a campus tour as well as a lecture and demonstration on mathematical knot theory presented by Dr. Kevin Gammon of the Cumberland University Mathematics Department assisted by group of Cumberland students majoring in Mathematics and volunteers from the audience.  Each participant in the contest received a goody bag as well as a Certificate of Participation.  Door prizes were also given out.


Details concerning the 2012 AMC 10/12 contests, as well as the rest of the AMC programs are available on the AMC website:  For further information, contact the AMC directly by phone (800-527-3690) or via email (  For information regarding the host site (Cumberland University), please call (615-547-1278) or email ( Dr. Laurie P. Dishman, Dean of Liberal Arts & Sciences and Associate Professor of Mathematics.