College of Agriculture, Engineering
and Science (CAES)

Siyanqoba UKZN Maths Stars Shine at National Competition

Siyanqoba UKZN Maths Stars Shine at National Competition

Two senior and two junior UKZN’s Siyanqoba Maths teams competed in the South African Mathematics Foundation (SAMF) annual Mathematics team competition.

The competition involves top Mathematics high school pupils from across the country.

This year, UKZN’s senior A team finished second and the junior A team fifth. More than 90 teams participated, some from countries outside South Africa.

Since 2011, the Siyanqoba programme, which is an outreach programme of the UKZN School of Mathematics, Statistics and Computer Science, has assisted high school students in achieving success in the South African Mathematics Olympiads (SAMO). The programme is managed by UKZN’s Emeritus Professor Poobhalan Pillay, who is also the national academic co-ordinator of the Olympiad training programme.

SAMF also organises the National Mathematics Olympiads in which about 100 000 learners from across the country participate. Brothers Aaron and Jaedon Naidu, were among the top 10 in the country, in the senior and junior divisions respectively. Both have been with UKZN Siyanqoba for several years.

Pillay thanked the various people involved in making the event a success, including the College of Agriculture, Engineering and Science, the Actuarial Society of South Africa, Casio, the SAMF and lecturers and coaches from the School of Mathematics, Statistics and Computer Science who had selflessly given up their Saturday mornings to train the 60 odd learners, representing the cream of high school Mathematics learners in greater Durban.

‘I am always so impressed with the amazing work done by Professor Poobhalan Pillay and his team of helpers, congrats to all,’ said Dean and Head of School, Professor Delia North. ‘Through their selfless and enthusiastic efforts, they have inspired so many children to love Mathematics and study further.’

Words: Poobhalan Pillay