WASHINGTON, DC--(Marketwire - October 18, 2010) -  The MATHCOUNTS Foundation (www.mathcounts.org) was asked to participate in the first White House Science Fair with President Barack Obama. The White House hosted the science fair to celebrate winners from the fields of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).

Tristen Carmean, a student at Maryland's Chesapeake Science Point Public Charter School, and member of the winning 2009 MATHCOUNTS Online Challenge team, attended the event representing the MATHCOUNTS Foundation. The challenge was the first national online event hosted by the MATHCOUNTS Foundation.

"MATHCOUNTS was honored to be asked to attend this event," said Lou DiGioia, executive director of MATHCOUNTS. "Our organization is designed to increase enthusiasm for math in middle-school students and improve problem-solving skills for our next generation of leaders. It is critical that students be recognized for their accomplishments in mathematics and science."

MATHCOUNTS strives to drive middle-school students to develop a passion for mathematics, an important administration goal that was underscored at Monday's event.

At the White House on Monday, the president toured students' exhibits and later discussed the importance of STEM education to our country's economic future. During the address, the president recognized the students in attendance, saying, "When you win first place at a science fair, nobody's rushing the field or dumping Gatorade over your head. But, in many ways, our future depends on what happens in those contests, what happens when a young person is engaged in conducting an experiment or writing a piece of software or solving a hard math problem or designing a new gadget."

The president said that the premise of America is that anyone with a good idea can prosper, and that these young Americans are helping to ensure that the nation will lead the world in developing new technologies, businesses and industries in the future.

According to the White House, the science fair fulfills a commitment the president made at the launch of his "Educate to Innovate" campaign in November 2009 to inspire boys and girls to excel in math and science. As the president noted then, "If you win the NCAA championship, you come to the White House. Well, if you're a young person and you produce the best experiment or design, the best hardware or software, you ought to be recognized for that achievement, too."

The White House event kicks off a week dedicated to science and engineering that culminates with the USA Science and Engineering Festival on the National Mall in Washington, D.C.

More information on the MATHCOUNTS Foundation is available at www.mathcounts.org.


  • To secure America's global competitiveness, MATHCOUNTS inspires excellence, confidence and curiosity in U.S. middle school students through fun and challenging math programs.
  • Having existed for 28 years, MATHCOUNTS has reached more than 6 million students through its programs.
  • The program has received two White House citations as an outstanding private sector initiative and been recognized in White House ceremonies by five presidents.
  • MATHCOUNTS relies upon a national network of 17,000 volunteers.

A 501(c)(3) organization, funding for MATHCOUNTS comes primarily from its National Sponsors; Raytheon Company, National Defense Education Company, Northrop Grumman Foundation, National Society of Professional Engineers, CNA Foundation, ThinkFun, Texas Instruments Incorporated and 3M Foundation. MATHCOUNTS was founded by The National Society of Professional Engineers, the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics and CNA Foundation.