This past November marked the beginning of an Eastside Catholic club that attracted a shocking number of students: Crusader Mathletes. Eastside Catholic’s Danielle Maletta, co-advisor to the Crusader Mathletes club along with Mrs. Judith Petersen, said that she expects to receive 50-60 applications by the end of the deadline.
Of those applicants, there are indeed students who have embraced their inner geek and joined Crusader Mathletes out of their love for mathematics. Senior Miles Linde said, “I’m doing mathletes because I enjoy doing math and want to be around other people who also like math.” Senior Christianna Mueller, who shares Miles’ passion for math, said, “I’m doing Mathletes because I love numbers and the logical nature of math. Why not be a part of a group of math lovers as well?” This sort of passion for math will certainly be welcomed in the club.
Surprisingly, though, it seems that all of the 50-plus applicants may not necessarily fit the mathlete stereotype. Maletta remarked, “I thought it would be a nerd convention, but there were cool people at the meeting too!”
What, then, could be attracting such a diverse group of students to a typically all-“geek” club?
A survey of the applicants suggests that students were motivated to join the club for a variety of reasons. Among these, the main motivations seemed to be the scholarship opportunities involved as well as the honors cord mathletes receive at graduation, the official t-shirt, and the time spent with fellow mathletes. In fact, senior Ian Davis said that he joined the club because “everybody’s doing it!”
Yet despite these compelling motivations to join the Crusader Mathletes club, there are still those who feel that they have had their fill of math. Senior Megan Drews remarked, “I’m not doing Mathletes because AP Calc’ gives me enough math already!” However, for those who can appreciate a little extra math on top of their courses, becoming a mathlete seems to be a great opportunity.
Beyond the motivators above, mathletics participants will be expected to have completed at least two math classes at Eastside Catholic, be currently enrolled in a math class, maintain a B average in all math classes, volunteer as math tutors, and attend three meetings throughout the year. Meetings should mainly involve scholarship discussions, actual scholarship qualification tests, as well as fun math puzzle-solving. As quoted from the National Chapter of Mu Alpha Theta, the club will be “dedicated to inspiring keen interest, strong scholarship, and enjoyment in mathematics.”
So it sounds like the Crusader Mathletes club is off to a great start. Mrs. Maletta teasingly remarked, “What a slogan: ‘Come to Eastside Catholic, we have one of the biggest mathletics clubs around!’ ”