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Bethel College places high in programming competition

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NORTH NEWTON, KAN. -- Bethel College finished first among small colleges and second overall for Kansas educational institutions at the ACM North Central North American Regional Programming contest. The competition took place Nov. 13 at Emporia State University. ACM, the Association for Computing Machinery, is a professional organization devoted to advancing the skills of information technology professionals and students worldwide.

Assistant professor of computer science Karl Friesen described the event as "a five-hour contest of brain-bending exertion, as teams competed against the clock--and each other--to see who could solve the most problems in the least amount of time."

This year, Bethel finished second in the state of Kansas and 23rd overall out of a field of 187 teams, Friesen said, improving from last year’s 31st place overall finish.

The North Central North American region includes Iowa, Kansas, Manitoba, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin, and parts of Ontario.

"The problems this year seemed to be more difficult than in previous years," Friesen said. "Fully one-third of the field failed to solve a single problem."

Bethel College fielded two programming teams. Team #1, which solved three problems with a total elapsed time of 427 minutes, consisted of senior Jesse Overright, Normal, Ill., junior David Nance, Dallas, Texas, and sophomore Peter Goerzen, Goessel, Kan. Members of Team #2 were senior Rafael Feijo, Lakeland, Fla., junior Jeremy Duerksen, Perkasie, Pa., and sophomore Meghan Reha, Tiskilwa, Ill.

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