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December 10, 2009

Moody's Mega Math Challenge will award $100,000 in high school math contest

High school juniors and seniors from Maine to Florida are invited to participate in the fifth annual Moody's Mega Math Challenge for a chance to win part of $100,000 in scholarship prizes. The competition, which is entirely Internet based and free of entrance and participation fees, challenges teams of students to solve an open-ended, realistic, applied math-modeling problem focused on real-world issues in just 14 hours. The problem is unknown to teams until Challenge weekend (March 6-7, 2010) when they are able to download it and work on their solution. Registration is now open!

Participation in the Challenge is a great way to find out what it's like to work on a business team and it looks great on college applications. And, of course, there's always the scholarship money: the top team in Moody's Mega Math Challenge will walk away with $20,000 in prizes.

Since 2006, more than 4,000 high school juniors and seniors have participated in the Challenge and winners have received $275,000 in scholarship prizes for submitting and presenting the top solutions to complex, real-world problems. Each year's problem is kept a secret until teams download it at 7:00 a.m. on their selected work day during Challenge weekend. They have until 9:00 p.m. that same night to research the problem, formulate assumptions, develop and test a model, analyze their findings, and summarize their response in a solution paper, which they upload to the Challenge website.

"Schools of all types and sizes have had success in this competition -- you don't need a math club or math team captain to win -- and I strongly encourage all high schools to participate," said Michelle Montgomery, M3 Challenge Project Director. "Teams made up of students with a variety of skills who can work well together under a tight deadline have been most successful."

The goal of Moody's Mega Math Challenge is to increase interest and encourage high school students to pursue studies and careers in applied mathematics, economics, and finance. The Challenge spotlights applied mathematics as a powerful problem-solving tool, as a viable and exciting profession, and as a vital contributor to advances in an increasingly technical society. It is funded by The Moody's Foundation and organized by the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM).

Complete information on Moody's Mega Math Challenge 2010 can be found at http://m3challenge.siam.org. Register your team through the "participate" link.

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About the Sponsor
The Moody's Foundation is a charitable organization dedicated to supporting a variety of nonprofit education, health and human services, civic, and arts and culture programs. Established by Moody's Corporation in 2001, the Foundation's primary area of giving is secondary and higher education with a focus on mathematics, economics and finance. Further information is available at: http://philanthropy.moodys.com.

Moody's is an essential component of the global capital markets, providing credit ratings, research, tools and analysis that contribute to transparent and integrated financial markets. Moody's Corporation (NYSE: MCO) is the parent company of Moody's Investors Service, which provides credit ratings and research covering debt instruments and securities, and Moody's Analytics, which encompasses the growing array of Moody's non-ratings businesses including risk management software for financial institutions, quantitative credit analysis tools, economic research and data services, data and analytical tools for the structured finance market, and training and other professional services. The Corporation, which reported revenue of $1.8 billion in 2008, employs approximately 3,900 people worldwide and maintains a presence in 29 countries. Further information is available at www.moodys.com.

About the Organizer
The Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM), headquartered in Philadelphia, PA, is an international society of over 12,000 individual members. These include applied and computational mathematicians and computer scientists, as well as other scientists and engineers. Members are researchers, educators, students, and practitioners from 85 countries in industry, government, laboratories, and academia. The Society, which also includes almost 500 academic and corporate institutional members, serves and advances the disciplines of applied mathematics and computational science by publishing a variety of books and prestigious peer-reviewed research journals, by conducting conferences, and by hosting activity groups in various areas of mathematics. SIAM provides many opportunities for students including regional sections and student chapters. Further information is available at www.siam.org.


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