While the country’s sports athletes are still waging their impressive campaign at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, every one of the six-member Philippine team to the recently concluded 62nd International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO) each won a medal at one of the most difficult and most prestigious mathematics competitions in the world.
Immanuel Josiah Balete of St. Stephen’s High School, Raphael Dylan Dalida of Philippine Science High School – Main Campus, Steven Reyes of Saint Jude Catholic School, and Bryce Ainsley Sanchez of Grace Christian College each won a silver medal in the Olympics of math competitions.
Meanwhile, Sarji Elijah Bona of De La Salle University – Senior High School and Vincent Dela Cruz of Valenzuela City School of Mathematics and Science each took home a bronze medal.
The team was led by Christian Paul Chan Shio (leader) and Raymond Joseph Fadri (deputy leader), on behalf of the Mathematical Society of the Philippines (MSP). Training for the contestants was handled by professors from the University of the Philippines Diliman and the Ateneo de Manila University, and included past team officials such as Richard Eden (team leader, 2016-2019) and Louie John Vallejo (deputy leader, 2015-2017).
Altogether, the team ranked 23rd out of 107 countries, a monumental jump from 2020, when the Philippines ended the competition in 43rd place.
Hosted by St. Petersburg, Russia, the 62nd IMO is the second competition in a row held online due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.
“This is a very good year for waving the Philippine banner in the international arena,” said DOST Science Education Institute (DOST-SEI) director Josette T. Biyo. “These students are showing the world that Filipinos are achievers in anything they put their minds to, be it sports or intellectual pursuits.”
“These medals are hard-earned and well deserved,” added Chan Shio. “They’re no strangers to the rigors of competition, and their commitment and dedication really paid off. They made us and the country very proud.”
“The Philippine Team did particularly well this year, even doing better than historically strong teams like Japan, France and Romania,” said MSP president Jose Ernie C. Lope. “Once again, the Philippines has shown that it is not far behind the world leaders in mathematics competitions. Huge congratulations to all our contestants and to lead coaches Dr. Chan Shio and Mr. Fadri. On behalf of the MSP, I would like to thank DOST-SEI and HARI Foundation for generously supporting us in this important endeavor.”