Math team counts among top 10 in world

The results are in and a team of three UBC students has placed in the top 10 in the 60th International William Lowell Putnam Mathematical Competition. Undergraduates Joel Erickson, Jesse Goodman and Ho Sen Yung were coached by Mathematics Prof. Lon Rosen and Assoc. Prof. Rajiv Gupta.

It is the fourth time in the past nine years that UBC has placed in the top 10 in the competition.

B.C. was the only province to have two universities garner a top 10 berth with Simon Fraser University also placing.

Of the 2,900 students who wrote the test, seven of the top 24 students were from Canadian universities with UBC's Erickson and Goodman among that elite group. It is the fourth time in the last seven years that at least one UBC student has finished in the top 25.

"We've never had two students in the top 24," says Mathematics Dept. Head George Bluman. In total, 431 North American colleges and universities were entered in the prestigious contest which was won by the University of Waterloo with Harvard University second and Duke University third. Among those finishing in the top 10 were the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Princeton University and Stanford University.

Top performers in the annual competition have gone on to become some of Canada's leading scientists and mathematicians, say competition organizers.

Native plant trend cultivated locally

The second annual Native Plant Sale and Celebration at the Botanical Garden (6804 Southwest Marine Dr.) is April 9, from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Eight south coast nurseries will be offering more than 200 species of native plants for sale. The community event--which attracted 2,500 people last year--features informative exhibits and experts as well as free admission and tours of the university's famed Botanical Garden.

The unprecedented interest in native plants which is sweeping North America has taken root in the Lower Mainland and is growing rapidly. Vancouver Mayor Philip Owen has declared April 3-9 Backyard Biodiversity Week.