Three teams of students from the Cheriton School of Computer Science, each with a triad of exceptional coders, competed on Saturday, February 26 at the 2021 East Central North America Regional International Collegiate Programming Contest.
Team Waterloo Gold, consisting of Chris Trevisan (CS 1B), Pang Wen Yuen (CS 2B) and Marian Dietz (a CS Master’s student), came in third, solving 11 of 13 algorithmic coding problems.
Team Waterloo Black, consisting of Kevin Wan (CS 2B), Moses Xu (CS 1B) and Andrew Dong (CS 1B), came in fourth, also solving 11 of 13 problems.
Team Waterloo White, consisting of Arash Mahmoudian Bidgoli (CS 3B), Jamie Sebastian (CS 4A) and Andrew Qi Tang (CS 2B), came in tenth, solving eight of the 11 problems.
2021 East Central North America Regional Contest ICPC • Top 10 teams
Waterloo’s teams are coached by Cheriton School of Computer Science Professors Ondřej Lhoták and Troy Vasiga, and sponsored by Jane Street, an international firm that trades a wide range of financial products.
“I am really proud of all the teams that represented Waterloo,” said Professor Vasiga. “It was the first time that many of the team members had met their teammates in person, since our past contests and training have all been done virtually. It was also interesting to see that some of the most intense competition Waterloo teams faced was from other Waterloo teams. I know that Waterloo Gold will represent UWaterloo with distinction at the North American Championships in May.”
About the International Collegiate Programming Contest
The International Collegiate Programming Contest is the oldest, largest and most prestigious university-level algorithmic programming contest in the world. Each year, more than 50,000 students from more than 3,000 universities across 111 countries compete in more than 400 on-site competitions to earn a spot at the World Finals. Volunteer coaches prepare their teams with intense training and instruction in algorithms, programming and teamwork strategy.
Huddled around a single computer, teams of three attempt to solve about a dozen complex real-world problems within a gruelling five-hour deadline. Teammates collaborate to rank the difficulty of the problems, deduce the requirements, design test beds and build software systems that solve the problems.
In ICPC competitions, teams of three students represent their university in multiple levels of regional competition. Success at one level leads to an invitation to the next. Each region progresses differently, but the result is the same — the best teams advance. The final regional contest determines the teams advancing to the World Finals.
Waterloo at the International Collegiate Programming Contests
The University of Waterloo is the only Canadian university to win the International Collegiate Programming Competition World Finals, taking the prized title in 1994 and again in 1999.
Most recently, Waterloo’s team consisting of Ildar Gainullin, Jason Yuen and Wesley Leung dominated the competition at the 2021 ICPC North America Division Championship, earning the triad of programmers the opportunity to compete in the 45th ICPC World Finals.