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Students win programming competition

by Kalamalama staff

HPU students took top honors in the Pacific Northwest at the Association for Computing Machinery’s Pacific Region Programming Contest, an international collegiate computer problem-solving competition.

The Pacific Region comprises colleges and universities in Alaska, British Columbia, California, Hawai‘i, Oregon, Nevada, and Washington. Because of the region’s large geographic area, this year’s contest was held simultaneously at multiple sites: Oregon and California, which represented the north and south sites, respectively, and, for the first time, Hawai‘i. The Hawai‘i site was hosted by Brigham Young University-Hawai‘i.


Student teams from each designated site simultaneously competed during a five-hour period to solve programming problems using software programming languages C, C++, or Java. Teams were ranked according to the most problems solved, with ties broken by time and by the number of incorrect problem submissions. HPU took first and third place honors for Hawai‘i, while BYU-H took second place. The winners from the other two sites were the University of British Columbia and Stanford University.

More than 10,000 students from more than 60 countries on six continents competed in the event which, according to Dr. Curt Powley, HPU organizer and assistant professor of computer science, was a great way for computer science students to elevate their educational experience and develop real-world skills by competing against peers from other universities.

“ When participating in events like this [students] learn to become better programmers, increase knowledge of theories required to solve problems, learn teamwork and leadership skills, and gain confidence,” said Powley.

Regional contests are held each fall. Qualifying teams compete in the world finals the following spring.


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