The mathematical modeling course at
Mass Academy, taught by Mrs. Burns, is not the traditional
high school math class. We focus on improving our analytical thinking skills by solving various
competition-style problems, simultaneously covering a broad range of ideas, from geometry to
combinatorics. There is a particular emphasis on mathematical modeling, in which we express real
life scenarios in mathematical functions and ideas, often making use of mathematical and
programmatic software. This is accomplished in various group projects, in particular HiMCM.
Football Tickets with Mathematica
One of our first projects involved the use of Mathematica - a computational software used in
mathematical modeling. This program allows us to combine math and more computational techniques
by using the wolfram language. The problem shown used Mathematica to find the optimal pricing
for tickets for the football games at a high school to yield maximum profit.
The International High School Mathematical Contest in Modeling (HiMCM) is like a rite of passage
for Mass Academy students. This is a two-week long competition (although we must do it in
48-hours) in which a group of students will attempt to solve a real life problem by building and
analyzing a mathematical model. This process was highly collaborative, and involved researching
for information, building functions and interactions, then implementing it in software to fully
solve the problem. I worked with Rianna Santra, Joshua Schnee, and Venkatraman Varatharajan to complete this problem!