Brazil wins six medals at Int’l Mathematical Olympiad

The Brazilian students bagged two silver and four bronze

Published in 23/07/2019 - 15:03 By Alana Grandra - Rio de Janeiro

Brazil won six medals at the 60th International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO 2019), held in Bath, UK, from June 11 through 12, two of which silver, and four bronze. The Brazilian delegation scored 135 points altogether, which brought the country to 29th of 112 nations, tied with Turkey.

The team was made up of medal winners from last year’s 40th Brazilian Mathematical Olympiad, and was led by teachers Edmilson Motta and Carlos Shine, from São Paulo

Competition is fierce

Teacher Edmilson Motta told Agência Brasil he was “really happy” with the result “because all the six participating students got a medal.” IMO 2019 saw a total of 621 high school students from 112 countries, aged 14 to 19. Each nation is allowed to send up to six students.

Motta explained that the Brazilian group was in the higher-performing half. “The countries with the best education are in the competition. It was a really good result,” he stressed.

He was sorry Brazil failed to bring home a gold medal this time, as happened last year. “We always have this expectation, but our performance was really satisfactory.”

Essential subject

Motta argued that knowing mathematics is important for all fields. “Mastering numerical and analytical methods so present in the essence of mathematics is key in every area you want to develop, be it part of the exact, biological, or human sciences. It’s really valuable knowledge.”

The international event was first hosted in Romania in 1959. Brazil has participated since 1979, and has bagged ten gold, 45 silver, and 81 bronze medals so far. This year, only 16 countries took part in the contest. Until last year, Brazil was the Latin American country with the highest number of awards—a title snatched this year by Peru.

A leap for Brazil

In 2020, the contest will take place in Saint Petersburg, in Russia. Edmilson Motta said three of the boys representing Brazil this year are candidates for next year. “The teams are renewed and new kids join in. Our goal is to climb up the ranking and get gold medals more often.”

One gold medal a year is seen as low frequency. “It’s not good, if you take into account the screening in our country,” the teacher said. Their goal is to win a gold medal every year. “It’s important for Brazil to take a performance leap.”

Translation: Fabrício Ferreira -  Edition: Aline Leal / Augusto Queiroz

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