Shourya Pandey, 13, a student of Ryan International School in Sanpada, was awarded the first rank in Asia in the International Mathematics Olympiad (IMO) held by the Science Olympiad Foundation (SOF) on Sunday. A mathematics buff, Pandey was awarded Rs1 lakh in the examinations conducted over the past year.
“It was rigorous preparation for nearly six months and I am happy with my achievement. Honestly, I did not expect it and I do not know what I will do with the money. I will probably deposit it in a bank,” said Pandey.
On Sunday, 207 people, including principals, teachers and students, were felicitated from Maharashtra and Goa. Since the past 15 years, SOF has been organising Olympiads in computers, science, mathematics and english. Nearly 20,000 schools from more than 1,000 cities participated. The Olympiad is held in 14 countries in Asia with around 20lakh participants.
For the first time, SOF awarded cash prizes and felicitated students from 14 states to motivate them. “For the past 14 years, only the students who secured international ranks were recognised and awarded. However, SOF decided to felicitate state toppers in public functions to acknowledge and motivate performance,” said Mahabir Singh, founder and director, SOF.
This year, four students from Maharashtra secured the first international rank, of which three were from Mumbai. Three from the primary section also ranked first. Totally, seven students from the state were ranked number one worldwide in various subjects.
Students were excited with the certificates and cash prizes. “I am happy I was felicitated. It will help me take up more Olympiad exams,” said Om Mehta, a student of Universal School in Ghatkopar, who secured the state rank one (Mahrashtra) in the National Cyber Olympaid and the International Maths Olympiad.
Lina Kashyap, pro-vice chancellor of Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), was one of the chief guests at the event. “There is a lot of talent in our country and programmes like these give children the right direction. They enhance the spirit of the competition but also make both parents and children aware,” said Kashyap.