The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

    MSU computer science team wins IBM contest

    A computer science team from Mississippi State took the winning ribbon at the 2002 regional competition sponsored by IBM. The Association for Computing Machinery International promotes the competitions that advance the skills of information technology professionals and students worldwide. The annual competition was recently held at the Daytona Beach, Fla., campus of Embry Riddle Aeronautical University.
    MSU was represented by two teams-Team Maroon and Team White-that went up against a total of 83 other teams from the southeastern states. Team Maroon brought home first place while Team White finished 30th. The Florida Institute of Technology, University of Central Florida and Georgia Institute of Technology finished second through fourth, respectively.
    Assistant professor David A. Dampier and associate professor Donna S. Reese are faculty coaches of the teams.
    “The teams in competition are comprised of students who excel in computer programming at their respective schools,” Reese said.
    Members of Team Maroon are John A. Stenmark, senior computer engineering major; Davis Herring, senior computer science and physics major, and Vinny Senguttuvan, MSU graduate student.
    Members of Team White are Christopher R. Waters and James C. Bane, both sophomore computer science majors and Sunil Nandihalli, MSU graduate student.
    The competition lasted five hours while each team of three faced 10 problems on a computer.
    “We basically just went for the divide-and-conquer method, which seemed to work really well. We just split up and did our thing,” Waters said.
    The range of schools that were entered in the competition is only limited to universities and colleges from the southeastern states.
    “We were up against some really good schools,” Stenmark said. “We didn’t even know we had won until the very end when they announced it.”
    Team Maroon submitted their final answer only minutes away from the five-hour deadline. Of the 10 problems faced, Team Maroon successfully answered eight within the time limit.
    “These competitions are intense and seem very long. Our team [Maroon] was on the same wavelength, and we really worked together well, that’s why we were successful,” Herring said.
    By virtue of its win, Team Maroon travels to Beverly Hills, Calif., in March for the world collegiate programming competition. This will be a gathering of the top computer science students and professionals in the world.

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    MSU computer science team wins IBM contest