15 year old Faith Odunsi, recently made Nigeria proud as she emerged the winner of the Global Open Mathematics Tournament, an international competition with participants from Europe, Africa, America, Asia and Australia.
The Nigerian teenager put the West African nation on the map after emerging as the winner, with 40 points, and the second runner tailing her with 10 points against many other notable international contestants.
Odunsi excelled in all rounds of the competition and didn’t think she’d be declared the winner until the final round when she answered more questions than her rivals.
In an interview with The Punch, Faith said, “My heart raced but I felt relieved.” Odunsi is currently in her senior year of high school at the Ambassadors School in Ota, Ogun State. Odunsi’s father is a doctor, and her mother is a businesswoman, and she credits her father for her mathematical proclivity.
Odunsi describes her feelings about this achievement as “happy and honoured.” Despite the stiff competition, Odunsi came out on top by a 30-point margin. She now has not only the title, but also a $1,000 reward as the competition’s winner.
She walked away with the $1000 which was presented in an official ceremony which took place later on after the mathematics tournament rounded off.
According to her, the first stage of the tournament was the most difficult because she was not accustomed to the computer-based test. She scored 66 points in both the first and second rounds of the tournament which were all CBT then progressed to the quarter and semi-finals held on Microsoft teams, acing that round as well
Faith first won the hearts of many in 2018 when she set a record in the Cowbellpedia Mathematics Competition by answering 19 questions in 60 seconds.
According to Faith, she would like to study Computer Engineering outside Nigeria “because the facilities are better abroad and the experience is better. I don’t think I will be limited in Nigeria; I just think the opportunities will be better abroad.”
Faith has also participated in several other competitions including the national Olympiad which she has been doing since she was in JSS2 and was made the Queen of Mathematics from JSS3 to SS2.
She has also taken part in the South African Mathematics Olympiad where she received medals, Kangourou Sans Frontieres, American Mathematics Competition and Pan-African mathematics Olympiad where she also received a silver medal.