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Contact Information: Tanya Klein Public Relations 973-596-3433

High Schools Compete In NJIT Computer Programming Contest: Fair Lawn, Madison and Bergen County Academies Take Top Awards

Students from high schools in Fair Lawn, Madison and Hackensack took first, second and third-place prizes in a computer-programming contest held at New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT). Nearly 40 high-school teams from across the state competed in the contest, which was sponsored by the computer science department at NJIT.

 “Some students excel on a basketball court, some on a soccer field, others in computer programming: This contest attracted students who excel in programming,” said Narain Gehani, PhD, chairman of the computer science department at NJIT. “This was the second year NJIT hosted the computer programming contest, and almost 40 high schools competed. It shows that students love to program and that the computer science department at NJIT, one of the strongest departments on the East Coast, will continue this competition for a long time.”

Each team had three hours to solve rigorous computer-programming problems. The three teams that solved the most problems within the three-hour deadline received scholarships to NJIT or cash prizes, as well as a plaque and another cash prize for their schools. The contest was organized by James Geller, PhD, professor in the computer science department and Michael Baltrush, PhD, associate professor in the computer science department.

Serge Virodov, Paul Berruti and Kevin Coffey, all students at Fair Lawn High School, took first prize. They won a $500 cash award for their high school. Each team member also received either $4,000 applicable toward NJIT tuition or $400 in cash, plus an IBM personal digital assistant.

“Fair Lawn’s programming skills were extremely proficient,” said Joseph Leung, PhD, distinguished professor in the computer science department. “The questions we asked them to solve were rigorous, but the team showed great intellect in finding efficient solutions. They also worked together well, finishing several programs quickly.”

A three student team - Peter Koch, Evan Godfrey and Greg Marut - from Madison High School, Madison, won second place. They received a $300 cash award for their high school. Each student also won either $2,000 for NJIT tuition or $200 cash awards.

A team from Bergen County Academies, Hackensack, consisting of James Regan, of Cresskill, Gibson Kim, of Carlstadt, and August Sodora III, of Mahwah, won third place. They received a $300 dollar cash award for their high school, and each member will receive either $1,000 toward NJIT tuition or $100 cash awards.

One of the nation's leading public technological universities, New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) is a top-tier research university that prepares students to become leaders in the technology-dependent economy of the 21st century. NJIT's multidisciplinary curriculum and computing-intensive approach to education provide technological proficiency, business acumen and leadership skills. With an enrollment of more than 10,000 graduate and undergraduate students, NJIT offers small-campus intimacy with the resources of a major public research university. NJIT is a global leader in such fields as solar research, nanotechnology, resilient design, tissue engineering, and cyber-security, in addition to others. NJIT ranks 5th among U.S. polytechnic universities in research expenditures, topping $110 million, and is among the top 1 percent of public colleges and universities in return on educational investment, according to PayScale.com.