Consortium for Mathematics and its Applications

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December 13, 2023
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10 More Reasons to Participate in a Math Modeling Contest

In a world fueled by innovation and driven by problem solvers, there's a hidden gem that high school and undergraduate students can explore to sharpen their analytical skills and unleash their mathematical prowess – math modeling contests. 

These competitions are not just about numbers and equations; they're a gateway to a realm where creativity meets logic, and solutions emerge from the synergy of mathematical thinking and real-world challenges.

We previously shared 9 reasons to enter a math contest, and today we’re back with 10 more reasons. As a recap, here are the reasons we’ve shared before:

  • Challenge Your Brain - Can you think of a better way to test your brain power then by developing a solution to a real-world problem?
  • Develop Problem Solving Skills - From excelling in future classes, to strategizing workplace challenges, to improving performance, to assessing risk of important decisions, the problem solving skills you acquire by participating in a math contest will come in handy for the rest of your life.
  • Demonstrate Your Knowledge - Winning one of our contests is a great way to show what you and your team can do, while getting recognition on an international stage.
  • Develop Interpersonal Skills - You and your team members will be working on all of the interpersonal skills that come into play in a team setting: active listening, communication, collaboration, and building consensus to name a few. 
  • Improve Technical Writing - The final stage of our math contests is submitting a written report, documenting your proposed solution to the math modeling problem. 
  • Improve How You Handle Time-Based Pressure - Once the problems are posted for participants, there is a limited amount of time to get to work with your team to develop the strongest solution possible.
  • Strengthen Friendships - One of the most fun parts of our math contests is that you get to team up with your friends. 
  • Spur Creativity - We can get stuck in one way of thinking and it can be hard to break that. Creative thinking needed for our math modeling contests can help!
  • Earn an Impressive Resume Credential - Many students have reported that participation and success in our contests gives them a leg up when applying for internships and jobs.

Now, here are 10 more reasons to participate in a math modeling contest this year.

1. Hands-On, Real-World Application

Math modeling contests bridge the gap between theoretical knowledge and practical application. By participating, students are thrust into scenarios mirroring real-world problems, allowing them to see the tangible impact of their mathematical skills on issues ranging from environmental concerns to societal challenges.

2. Networking Opportunities

These contests often bring together like-minded individuals, creating a network of math enthusiasts, mentors, and professionals. Networking opportunities arising from participation can open doors to internships, mentorships, and valuable connections that extend beyond the competition.

3. Intellectual Growth

Engaging in math modeling pushes students beyond their comfort zones, promoting intellectual growth. It encourages exploration, experimentation, and a continuous pursuit of knowledge, nurturing a mindset that thrives on learning and adapting to new challenges.

4. Future-Ready Skills

In an era where adaptability and innovation are highly prized, the skills cultivated in math modeling contests align seamlessly with the demands of the future job market. It equips participants with a toolkit of skills – from data analysis to critical thinking – that are transferable across various domains.

5. Multidisciplinary Integration

Math modeling contests often involve interdisciplinary challenges that require participants to integrate mathematical concepts with principles from other fields such as biology, economics, or computer science. This multidisciplinary approach enhances the versatility of participants, preparing them for a world where problem-solving rarely falls neatly into a single academic category.

6. Feedback and Improvement

Participating in math modeling contests provides an opportunity for constructive feedback from team advisors. This feedback loop is a powerful tool for improvement, guiding participants to refine their problem-solving techniques and reinforcing the iterative nature of learning and success.

7. Global Recognition

Winning or even participating in prestigious math modeling contests brings global recognition. It can lead to invitations to conferences, presentations, and further opportunities to showcase skills on an international stage, fostering a sense of accomplishment and pride.

8. Impactful Project Experience

Math modeling often involves tackling real-world projects with significant societal impact. Participating students gain hands-on experience in devising solutions to problems that matter, contributing to a sense of purpose and instilling the belief that their mathematical skills can be a force for positive change.

9. Preparation for Academic Challenge

The analytical and critical thinking skills developed through math modeling contests serve as a robust foundation for facing academic challenges at higher levels. Whether it's advanced coursework, research projects, or postgraduate studies, participants are well-equipped to tackle complex problems with confidence.

10. Life-Long Learning Mindset

Engaging in math modeling instills a life-long learning mindset. Participants become accustomed to seeking knowledge, embracing challenges, and continuously refining their skills. This mindset is a cornerstone for success in any field, where adaptability and a thirst for learning are key drivers of personal and professional growth.

Participating in math modeling contests is not just about competition; it's a transformative journey. It propels students into a world where mathematical concepts evolve into solutions, problems become opportunities, and individuals become adept problem solvers ready to make a meaningful impact on the world.

So, why wait? Dive into the world of math modeling and let the equations pave the way to a future brimming with possibilities. Learn more about our math modeling contests here.

Written by

COMAP, Inc.

The Consortium for Mathematics and Its Applications is an award-winning non-profit organization whose mission is to improve mathematics education for students of all ages. Since 1980, COMAP has worked with teachers, students, and business people to create learning environments where mathematics is used to investigate and model real issues in our world.


COMAP, Inc.

COMAP develops curriculum resources, professional development programs, and contest opportunities that are multidisciplinary, academically rigorous, and fun for educators and students. COMAP's educational philosophy is centered around mathematical modeling: using mathematical tools to explore real-world problems.


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