On 1 April, MGCI participated in the Educational Computing Organization of Ontario (ECOO) Programming Contest at York University. MGCI had its best results in the tournament, with all three of its teams advancing to the regional round. MGCI’s B and A teams finished first and third overall, respectively!

First Place Team B [left to right]: Varun Venkataramanan, Kevin Wan, Kevin Huang, Victor Rong. Coach Mr. Jay [far right]. Photo by Varun Venkataramanan.

The ECOO Contest is a three-round team computer science competition held annually. The first round is a TDSB-wide competition, the second is a regional competition, and the final round pits the top teams in the province against one another. With only one computer at their disposal, teams attempted to solve four problems of increasing difficulty within three hours. The competition structure placed a strong emphasis on teamwork and collaboration. Ten points were awarded for perfect solutions, along with an additional time bonus. Two submissions per question were allowed, but teams earned an extra point if the first submission was correct.

Schools were allowed to enter a maximum of three teams with four members each, permitting one of them was an all-female team. Chosen through the Computer Science Club, MGCI’s three teams were as follows:

Team A: Jason Huang, Jeffrey Liu, Roger Fu, Matthew Chiang

Team B: Victor Rong, Varun Venkataramanan, Kevin Huang, Kevin Wan

Girls Team: Sophia Liu, Lila Huang, Jennifer Liang, Dora Su

Third Place Team A [left to right]: Matthew Chiang, Jeffrey Liu, Roger Fu, Jason Huang. Coach Mr. Jay [far right]. Photo by Varun Venkataramanan.

Two adjacent rooms were used for the competition. A live scoreboard was projected at the front of each room along with a stream of the other room. Team A started off strong as one of the first teams to complete the first problem. Team B took a steadier approach and was the first team to complete the competition, doing so in under two hours with perfect scores on every problem! Team A finished shortly after with a very high score, and the girls team worked hard until they completed the problems.

At the conclusion of the competition, a pizza lunch was served and medals were awarded. Although MGCI consistently performs well at the ECOO Contest, this year marks Garneau’s first ever podium finish. President of Computer Science Club and Team A member Jason said, “Each of the MGCI teams collaborated together as a cohesive unit, leading to the best performance our school has ever had at ECOO.” Jeffrey, another member of Team A, attributed the success to the contributions of every member, saying that “everyone had strong individual contributions to their team which was reflected in our performances.”

All of MGCI’s teams will be moving on to the regional competition on 29 April at York University. The regional competition will feature teams from the Toronto, York, and Peel District School Boards among others.

The teams are anticipating strong finishes in the next round, and have hopes of making the provincial final. The teams would like to thank Mr. Jay for his continued support.