Is college worth it?



They have done the math. College is worth it.

Last month, GHS seniors Matt Ciaramitaro, Sabrina Marnoto, Trevor Blank along with juniors Matilda Grow and Karina Keenan analyzed this through math modeling for Moody’s Mega Math Challenge.

Moody’s Mega Math Challenge is an applied mathematics competition open to high school mathematics teams in 45 states. This is Gloucester High School’s third year competing in this challenge.

Students are presented with a real-world, open-ended question to answer through problem solving and math modeling skills. The question is not given to students until the day of the competition. Then, they must research, solve, and write a report on the question in just that one day.

This year’s question: Is college worth it?

The team developed the answers to this question by predicting how much a student will have to pay for a degree. The team also analyzed the liabilities and benefits of different degrees and ranked colleges by the criteria most important to them.

One challenge the team faced was that they had to come up with one collective answer together.

“Working with a team is a lot of fun,” said senior and team member Sabrina Marnoto. “It’s a lot more fun to problem solve with a team because you can hear what other were thinking that you might not have thought of. Everyone had a different opinion on how they thought we should approach the question and it was really interesting to see us all bring our ideas together.”

According Marnoto, the team decided that college is worth it. However, coming up with that answer was not easy.

“It was hard because you had to step out of your comfort zone with answering the question,” said Marnoto. “Usually teachers just give you all the parts you need to answer a question, but we had to solve a very open-ended question that we had to research and decide what the question was asking.”