# Success Stories

## Snow Kang

Snow began IMACS in 1st grade and completed all levels of IMACS Math Enrichment. She returned during high school to complete the IMACS University Computer Science track. Snow's talents and keen interest in programming, civics, and service propelled her to 1st place finishes at FIU's Google Startup Competition, Ft. Lauderdale's Code for America Civic Hackathon, JusticeHack Miami, and Yale's Bulldog Invitational Mock Trial Competition.

In addition to being selected as a National Merit Finalist, Snow was named Cadet of the Year by the Florida Wing of the Civil Air Patrol and won 1st Place at the National Cadet Special Acts Competition. Snow credits IMACS for the way she thinks and approaches every aspect of her life.

### With a 5.5 GPA, 1580 out of 1600 on the SAT, and 800 on the SAT Math II exam, Snow was accepted at Dartmouth, UC Berkeley, NYU, Vanderbilt, Wellesley, and the University of Miami. She chose Dartmouth where she plans to double major in Computer Science and Economics and eventually pursue a career in cyberlaw or cybersecurity.

"IMACS is the one place that doesn't teach you steps to get to a specific solution but rather how to use logical and creative thinking to develop your own solution. It is the embodiment of everything learning should be."

## Mason Janenda

As a young child, Mason excelled in IMACS Math Enrichment classes and, in subsequent years, attended several weeks of IMACS summer camps. He later completed IMACS' university-level courses in Computer Science and Logic for Mathematics. Mason was honored by the College Board's National Hispanic Recognition Program for his achievement on the PSAT/NMSQT, and his high school mathematical modeling team was recognized by the Consortium for Mathematics and its Applications. Mason graduated high school with a perfect 4.0 GPA and 34 on the ACT.

A natural at sharing knowledge, Mason enjoys tutoring students in science and math at a local homeschool co-op, co-taught a robotics class for two years, and was a Teaching Assistant for an Honors Calculus seminar. He accomplished this and more while being an all-county varsity and travel soccer player and a dual-enrolled student at a regional 4-year university.

### Mason chose Rice University where, at 16 years old, he was accepted early decision into the George R. Brown School of Engineering. He plans to major in Materials Science and NanoEngineering.

"My early exposure to IMACS provided me with a unique foundation in logic and mathematics that helped me succeed in advanced STEM classes at a very early age. I understand numbers intuitively and am able to solve complex problems in my head thanks to my IMACS training."

## Cori Williams

Cori wanted to understand the fundamental concepts that make up the sophisticated theories of Computer Science. She started IMACS during the summer before tenth grade and went on to complete IMACS' University Computer Science track and AP Computer Science: Java Programming course. Cori scored a 5 on the AP Computer Science A exam, 800 on the math portion of the SAT, and was named a National Merit Scholarship Finalist.

Cori's keen interest in using her knowledge to understand real-world problems inspired her to write a Naive Bayes machine learning algorithm to detect political bias in online news articles. Her paper on it was selected for presentation at the Georgetown Junior Science and Humanities Symposium, and she was honored as an affiliate winner for the National Center for Women and Information Technology's Aspirations Award.

### Cori chose Brown University where she was accepted early decision and plans to study Computer Science and Economics. She hopes to pursue a career applying data science within education or a service-based field.

"IMACS turned the slightly enigmatic, ever-changing field of Computer Science into a never-ending set of fun puzzles for me to solve. It brought to my attention the intricacy and beauty of the field while illustrating how I could become a part of it."

## RJ Antonello

RJ was an IMACS student from kindergarten through 12th grade and took every class IMACS offered, including all levels of Math Enrichment, Computer Enrichment, Hi-Tech Summer Camp, University-Level Computer Science, AP Computer Science: Java Programming, and University-Level Logic for Mathematics.

With a 5.9 GPA and 2360 on the SAT, RJ graduated as co-valedictorian and was honored as a US Presidential Scholar candidate, National AP Scholar and National Merit Scholar. He and his teammates were also four-time Science Olympiad state champions.

### RJ was accepted to Caltech, Georgia Tech, Carnegie Mellon, and the University of Florida. He chose Caltech where he took junior-level Computer Science classes as a freshman and served as a Teaching Assistant for those classes as a sophomore. RJ conducted summer research in computer vision and was selected for an internship at Northrup Grumman. He will graduate with a double major in Computer Science and Philosophy and plans to attend graduate school to specialize in Machine Learning.

"IMACS taught me an organic approach to problem-solving, a way of thinking that demonstrates the necessary rigor required to solve genuinely challenging problems. The introduction to proofs and logic that I got at IMACS was absolutely critical to my success at Caltech."

## Fiona Brady

Fiona first attended IMACS Hi-Tech Summer Camp when she was ten. Over the next eight years, she went on to complete IMACS' university-level courses in University Computer Science, AP Computer Science: Java Programming, and Logic for Mathematics. Homeschooled since fifth grade, Fiona was awarded a National Merit Scholarship, named an AP Scholar with Distinction, and scored 2360 on the SAT. She is also a second degree black belt in Taekwondo and won a bronze medal at the 2013 AAU Junior Olympic Games.

As a high school student, Fiona studied four years of undergraduate, advanced undergraduate, and graduate classes in mathematics and physics at Northwestern University where she is the only student to have won the Outstanding Achievement in Advanced Mathematics Classes by a High School Student prize four years in a row. During that time, Fiona also served as a Teaching Assistant for the University of Chicago's Young Scholars Program, a position usually reserved for undergraduates.

### Fiona chose the University of Chicago, where she intends to major in Mathematics and Physics. She plans to pursue a career as a university professor of mathematics. Fiona directly credits IMACS for helping her to develop a deeper appreciation for and a sense of ownership of the mathematics that she learns.

"Logic and computer programming classes at IMACS taught me to how to organize my thinking and break problems into solvable pieces. The natural structure of logic and computer programming allowed me to see the structure of a mathematical proof as I was writing or reading it. When I understand it at that level, I feel I can reconstruct it and use it creatively as well."

## Zachary Farnsworth

Zac began taking IMACS classes in first grade. Nine years later, he had completed all of IMACS Mathematics Enrichment and Computer Enrichment and IMACS University-Level Computer Science. Zac graduated valedictorian of St. Thomas Aquinas High School, but not before being the founder and captain of the Robotics Club and the Programming Team, earning the rank of Eagle Scout, and being named a National Merit Finalist and National AP Scholar.

Having scored 2350 on the SAT, 800 on the SAT Math II Subject Test and 5's on the AP Calculus AB, AP Computer Science, AP calculus BC, and AP Statistics exams, Zac was accepted at Stanford, Cornell, UC Berkeley, Georgia Tech, Rice, and RPI. He chose Stanford where he plans to major in computer science.

### Zac directly credits IMACS for preparing him to master the concept-based material of the rigorous, freshman-year courses at Stanford.

"Being able to think both analytically and creatively is why Stanford students are at the forefront of technological innovation. My IMACS background taught me HOW to think, allowing me to stand out among my classmates, Because of this, I was able to easily understand the concepts taught in the accelerated freshman courses in programming, multivariable calculus, and differential equations."

## Rachel Cuozzo

Rachel began taking IMACS Math Enrichment as a second grader and progressed to the IMACS University Computer Science Track in middle school. While in high school, she completed IMACS' AP Computer Science Java Programming course. Rachel graduated near the top of her high school class with a 5.3 GPA and a score of 1540 out of 1600 on the SAT.

### Rachel directly credits IMACS for her success on the math section of the SAT and the ACT and, more importantly, for deepening her skills in abstract thinking, coding and problem solving.

Rachel chose MIT and is majoring in Brain and Cognitive Sciences. By the end of her freshman year, she had moved a full semester ahead of her peers while maintaining an 'A' average. During her freshman year, Rachel also began doing research with neuroscientists and molecular biologists on the unexplored areas deep within the brain and on a cure for Alzheimer's Disease.

"An MIT degree says to the world that you are capable of complex problem solving and abstract thinking. IMACS gave me a jumpstart on my MIT education, as it taught me to exercise the same parts of my mind that I use now on a daily basis."

## Jesse Salomon

In 1st grade, Jesse started IMACS Primary Math Enrichment. Twelve years later, he had completed the IMACS University-Level courses in Computer Science and Logic for Mathematics. He was valedictorian, a National Merit Scholar Finalist, a National AP Scholar, and winner of multiple science and math competitions and awards.

Jesse chose Caltech. Naturally, Caltech has many valedictorians, National AP Scholars and exceptionally talented students. However, Jesse's performance on Caltech's CS placement exam was so remarkable that the CS department contacted Jesse – before he took a single class at Caltech – about becoming a Teaching Assistant. By the end of his sophomore year, Jesse had been a TA for two CS classes and a mathematics tutor. (Of course, he was already excelling in upper-level CS and math classes in his first two years.)

### Jesse credits much of his success – from CS to liberal arts and everything in between – to IMACS' emphasis on mathematical proofs and logic.

"Hardly anyone enters college knowing how to write mathematical proofs, but thanks to IMACS, I can write proofs in my sleep! And beyond that, IMACS provided me with a framework to handle the abstract nature of advanced math at Caltech."

## Rachel Gologorsky

Rachel began attending IMACS as a first grader. Homeschooled since the third grade, she always made time for IMACS in a busy schedule that revolved around competitive chess. While rising to the rank of #1 player in the US and #15 player in the world among girls under 14 and later attaining the title of Woman FIDE Master at just 16 years old, Rachel completed IMACS' Advanced Math Enrichment and University-Level courses in Computer Science and Logic for Mathematics.

As a high school student, Rachel earned A's in multiple undergraduate math, science and computer science courses taken at Carnegie Mellon. She also scored a perfect 2400 on the SAT on her first attempt and earned 5's on all of her Advanced Placement exams, including Computer Science A, Calculus BC, Statistics and Physics C.

### Rachel chose Harvard, where she plans to major in computer science and mathematics. She credits IMACS for motivating her to choose computer science as a major.

"IMACS fostered precisely the clear, logical thought processes necessary to succeed in advanced math and computer science classes. It is very important, both in math and computer science, to be able to think in an abstract manner, and I am grateful that IMACS prepared me very well."

## Ryan Newton

Ryan Newton began IMACS classes in 5th grade...later, in high school, he took the IMACS Computer Science classes... he then attended the University of Indiana, where he was exempted from all undergraduate Computer Science classes.

He was accepted for the PhD research programs at: **Harvard, Princeton, Yale, MIT, Carnegie-Mellon, Brown, Stanford,
Cornell, Michigan, Northeastern, Indiana University & Illinois.**

"I can hardly believe how lucky we were to have encouraged Ryan to take IMACS classes." ** Bill Newton, Father**

## Shakthi Shrima

As a homeschooled student, Shakthi could learn computer science anywhere. She chose IMACS. From 10th grade to 12th grade, Shakthi completed IMACS' Modern Computer Science track, which includes University Computer Science I, University Computer Science II and AP Computer Science: Java Programming. Shakthi directly credits IMACS for her ability to deftly switch between various programming languages.

### Shakthi's multiple talents have earned her numerous honors. Original research in Number Theory propelled her and her teammates to the finals of the 2014 Siemens Competition in Math, Science & Technology where they won a $20,000 scholarship. Shakthi shines as a writer as well, having been named a 2015 YoungArts Winner in Poetry by the National YoungArts Foundation. As a high school student, she earned an "A" in UT's graduate-level course in Abstract Algebra.

Shakthi was accepted at Princeton, Harvard, UC Berkeley and UCLA and will attend Princeton where she plans to study theoretical math, creative writing and philosophy. She hopes to do research in some capacity throughout her career, either in academia or in a think-tank.

"I chose IMACS because it was thorough – it combined my predilection for theory and concept with rigor and practicality, both of which are needed to learn computer science well."

## Sarah Thomas

Sarah wanted to form a deep conceptual understanding of the algorithms and logic used in Computer Science. She started IMACS in the ninth grade and went on to complete IMACS' University Computer Science sequence. Graduating as co-valedictorian of her high school class with a score of 1570 out of 1600 on the SAT, Sarah was also a National Merit Scholar Finalist, a National AP Scholar and winner of multiple awards in math, science and language arts.

### Sarah credits IMACS with her exposure to functional programming and the powerful uses of data structures and algorithms therein, which are generally not taught in standard high school computer science courses.

Sarah was accepted at Stanford, UC Berkeley, Cornell, UVA, William & Mary, RPI and Virginia Tech. She chose Stanford where she will pursue coterminal bachelor's and master's degrees in Computer Science with a specialization in Human-Computer Interaction. During her academic and professional careers, Sarah plans to develop software and do research in natural language processing and computational linguistics and eventually share her knowledge in a teaching capacity.

"My IMACS experience gave me an appreciation for the fascinating and vast field of computer science and was integral to my decision to major in computer science. I learned many different methods for problem-solving, which will assist me in all my endeavors, whether related to computer science or not."

## Jacob Cordeiro

Jacob began homeschooling in 3rd grade. Because IMACS focuses on ability level, not age, Jacob was able to enroll in his first online IMACS course as a 4th grader. He went on to complete IMACS' university-level courses in Computer Science and Logic for Mathematics. In 8th grade, Jacob was accepted at Stanford Online High School from which he graduated with scores of 35 on the ACT and 5's on multiple AP exams.

### Many teens have a passion for math, computers and gaming, but few can be a voice of expertise. In high school, Jacob spoke at the Games for Change conference and worked as a teaching assistant for AwesomeMath. He also authored three popular books on gaming, including Minecraft for Dummies: Portable Edition, which has been a best seller in the tech book market, at one point reaching #1 in its category on Amazon.com!

Jacob chose Harvey Mudd where he plans to double-major in Mathematics and Computer Science with an eye toward a career designing educational games.

"IMACS gave me a whole new toolbox for approaching problems and puzzles across many different subjects. I learned how to visualize information and algorithms, and I loved discovering new programming languages like Scheme."

## Scott Caplan

Scott Caplan discovered the IMACS Mathematics Enrichment classes in 3rd grade, and progressed quickly through each level. In sixth grade he began the IMACS Elements of Mathematics course and gained an exemption from his regular school math classes. By the time he graduated high school, he had completed the IMACS University-Level classes in Real Analysis, Linear Algebra and Group Theory. Scott was heavily recruited by all the top universities. He chose to attend Yale University, where he completed all his remaining undergraduate mathematics requirements before his sophomore year.

### As a freshman at Yale, Scott received an A in Galois Theory, a senior-level course.

"In my first year at Yale everybody in my dorm was asking me questions about math proofs that seemed to me to be completely routine, and I remember asking myself how they could have studied for so long and yet know so little. Thank you IMACS for giving me such a great preparation for college!"

## Jennifer Hernandez

Starting in 3rd grade, Jennifer Hernandez worked her way through the IMACS Mathematics Enrichment classes. In middle school she took the IMACS Computer Enrichment and Computer Science classes.

### While in high school she took the IMACS Logic for Mathematics class, scoring a perfect 800 on the SAT Math as a sophomore.

Jennifer graduated from North Broward Preparatory School as valedictorian of her class.

She was accepted at **MIT, Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, University of Chicago (with a $9,000 merit scholarship), and Duke University.**

## Kenny Chan

Kenny Chan began IMACS classes as a sixth grader, taking electronics and University-Level Computer Science and Propositional Logic classes. He joined the IMACS team as an assistant to the electronics and computer instructors, and was a valuable contributor throughout high school. By the end of high school, Kenny had scored a perfect 5 in fourteen Advanced Placement courses, after winning the Continental Calculus competition for two straight years and captaining a Junior Engineering Technological Society team to sixth place at the national level. He also invented a portable battery backup (patent pending). Kenny was accepted into the Jerome Fisher Program at the Wharton Business School, and will graduate with dual degrees from Wharton and the University of Pennsylvania's School of Engineering.

### Kenny graduated valedictorian of Nova High School, Florida.

"My IMACS classes got me interested in my high school curriculum, and I used IMACS in applying to the Wharton Business School's Jerome Fisher program. I want to thank you for an amazing curriculum in electronics, logic and Computer Science."

## Brett Orvieto

Throughout a busy middle school and high school career that included playing saxophone in the band and varsity basketball and soccer, Brett Orvieto found two hours each week to study the IMACS University-Level Logic for Mathematics Curriculum.

As a junior, he scored a perfect 800 on the SAT in mathematics. In his senior year Brett accepted the Miami Herald Silver Knights Award for Mathematics, and was one of 12 male athletes in the state of Florida to be chosen for the Academic All-State Team.

### He also accepted an $80,000 Dean's Achievement Scholarship to Emory University.

"Although I juggled a lot of activities in high school, I believe it was my commitment to IMACS from fifth grade in combination with my involvement in athletics and community service that helped me earn a Dean's Achievement Scholarship at Emory (2/3 tuition paid for all four years)."

## David Smith

David began studying at IMACS in 4th grade and continued through his graduation from St. Thomas Aquinas High School as valedictorian. During this time, David completed IMACS' Advanced Math Enrichment and University-Level courses in Computer Science and Logic for Mathematics. He regularly placed among the top participants in multiple math and computer programming competitions and was a National AP Scholar and a National Merit Scholarship Finalist.

With offers from many top universities, David chose to attend the University of Pennsylvania's Vagelos Scholars Program in the Molecular Life Sciences where he continued to add to his achievements. David's answers on a variety of math topics won first place in the Class of 1880 Prize Examination for freshmen. As a sophomore, he earned the highest score among students from UPenn on the nationally renowned Putnam Competition in mathematics. In both contests, participants were judged by the quality of the arguments they gave to justify their responses. David directly credits his extensive time at IMACS writing clear, logical proofs as helping him to earn both honors.

### David is now working towards dual B.S./M.S. degrees in Biochemistry and Chemistry and is poised to achieve his dream of a career in biochemistry research.

"With an emphasis on abstract reasoning and complex problem solving, IMACS taught me to be creative and think about ideas in novel ways. This gave me a definite advantage as an undergraduate and enabled me to excel in high level mathematics courses."

## Danielle Ernst

In middle school, Danielle took IMACS classes in Computer Enrichment and was inspired. She quickly progressed to the IMACS university level Computer Science course in Scheme, and by 10th grade had also completed IMACS mathematics courses in both Propositional and Predicate Logic.

In addition to taking AP exams and winning such prestigious awards as National Merit Scholar and National Student Athlete, during her junior and senior years, she demonstrated an extraordinary talent by tackling an advanced Computer Science course in lambda calculus under the guidance of a senior IMACS instructor.

### Danielle graduated valedictorian at David Posnack Hebrew Day School, Florida.

Danielle was accepted by **Cornell University, University of Miami, Brandeis University, Northwestern University and The Johns Hopkins University**. She accepted National Merit and Bloomberg Scholarship awards to major in mathematics at The Johns Hopkins University.

## Dustin Katzin

Dustin began studying IMACS Computer Science in 7th grade and worked his way through all of IMACS' University-Level courses in Computer Science and Logic for Mathematics before graduating high school. Dustin received a perfect 1600 score on his SAT.

Dustin chose to double major at MIT in Physics and Math with Computer Science and is planning on pursuing a Ph.D. in Theoretical Physics. As a result of his IMACS background, he received MIT credit for Math for Computer Science and placed out of Introduction to Algorithms. **At the end of his sophomore year at MIT, Dustin had a 4.9 GPA out of 5**.

When given the choice between taking the Linear Algebra course that most MIT math majors study and the significantly more challenging, proof-based Linear Algebra course, Dustin chose the latter and directly cites IMACS Logic for Mathematics as the reason for his success (and an 'A') in the course.

"In the first lecture on functional programming in my Software Construction course, the professor told the class, 'You have probably never seen anything like this before.' The other students were blown away because they had never studied such sophisticated programming concepts. I ended up acing the course project due to my background in functional programming at IMACS."

## Zachary Kaufman

Zachary started IMACS in 1st grade. During his IMACS years, Zachary completed Math Enrichment, Computer Enrichment, Electronics and University-Level courses in Computer Science and Logic for Mathematics. He scored 800 on the math portion of the SAT and was a National Merit Scholarship Winner.

As an undergraduate studying Electrical Engineering in the University of Florida's Honors Program, Zachary conducted extensive research that led to several prestigious awards and a patent application. **Notably, he was named a Goldwater Scholar, the nation's most prestigious undergraduate award for science and engineering.** Zachary was also one of only 20 students nationally to receive a NASA Undergraduate Fellowship. All while on the way to graduating with a perfect 4.0 GPA!

**After receiving full scholarships to the Electrical Engineering PhD programs at Stanford, Berkeley, Georgia Tech and Harvard, **as well as an NSF Fellowship, Zachary chose to
pursue his doctorate at Stanford with an emphasis on devices with biomedical applications. He directly credits his IMACS classes for teaching him the skills he used to succeed on engineering projects and in the lab.

"Graduate school at Stanford was so much easier with the logical thinking skills I learned at IMACS. While classmates tried to memorize each type of problem, I was able to strongly grasp core concepts and use them to solve any problem, even if it was different from those I had seen."

## Troy Daly

Troy began his IMACS journey at the age of nine. After completing both Math Enrichment and Computer Programming & Virtual Robotics, Troy studied the university-level Computer Science and Logic for Mathematics programs. Before graduating high school, Troy was a National Merit Finalist, National AP Scholar, National Chess Champion and valedictorian of his class.

### After his freshman year at the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School of Business, Troy reported that the critical thinking and logical reasoning skills he learned at IMACS gave him the confidence to handle any challenge at Penn. In particular, he found that his programming skills gave him a huge advantage over his Wharton peers in the required Operations Information Management course.

"Every student should have the opportunity to attend IMACS. Even though I attend an Ivy League school with intelligent students, IMACS taught me to think abstractly and gave me a leg up over my peers. The skills and confidence IMACS afforded me played a fundamental role in my success during my first year at Wharton."