Adding up the Wins: CGCC’s Excellence in Mathematics Competition


On Friday, November 1st, ACP-Erie’s Math Club hopped on the bus to Chandler Gilbert Community College to attend the annual Excellence in Mathematics High School Competition. Students in grades 9 through 12 from across the Chandler Unified School District participated in the event. There were two different levels of participation: Level I was for students in pre-calculus or higher, while Level II was for students in math classes below pre-calculus.

Sunny V.
Here’s the star-shaped trophy that Sunny won at CGCC.

Freshman Sunny Vakkalanka earned first place at the competition for the Level II division! As well, Taman Truong won seventh place for the Level I division. Notably, Sunny is the third ACP-Erie student in a row to secure the title of first place for CGCC Level II. Sunny was both surprised and ecstatic when he found out that he had continued this legacy. I took a moment to interview Sunny and learn first-hand about his experience at the competition:

Q1: How did you feel when you found out that you won first place for your level?

A1: I couldn’t stop smiling when I found out that I had won. It reminded me of when I had to do a debate during 8th grade, and I basically forgot about the research I had to do for it. On the day of, I had to speak in front of 120 people with no speech — just based off of memory. While I was speaking, my knees were shaking so, so much. I think that’s how I felt when I got the award.

Q2: At the tournament, students also competed in smaller STEM-based competitions. Could you describe your experience with the egg-drop competition?

A2: For the egg-drop competition, I was honestly really exhausted. I just tried to remember a YouTube video I watched about egg-drop projects (shout-out to Mark Rober!!), so I tried recreate that. Sadly, at the end, our egg cracked, and we didn’t win the prize.

Sunny V.
ACP’s unsuccessful attempt at the egg drop…

Q3: How long have you been a member of Math Club?

A3: I’ve been in Math Club for three months.

Q4: What is the biggest challenge of doing math?

A4: For me, the biggest challenge in doing math is double-checking the work at the end; it takes a lot of time! It’s especially nerve-wracking when I have a time limit.

Q5: What other hobbies do you have, besides attending math competitions?

A5: My hobbies include watching too much YouTube, reading mystery novels, and doing NASA competitions.

Q6:What’s something not a lot of people know about you?

A6: Despite my namesake, I actually hate the sun. I would much rather live in a place where it snows 24/7.

Congratulations to Sunny for winning first place for Level II at CGCC. What an outstanding accomplishment for freshman year!