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Mount St. Mary’s Students Place First in Programming Competition 

Jessalyn Powell, C'24

Mount students win programming competition

Ethan Knarr, Graham Preston and Jack Hohl won the student programming competition at the CCSC-Eastern Conference.

A Mount St. Mary’s University team of seniors Graham Preston, Ethan Knarr and Jack Hohl took first place in the Consortium for Computing Sciences in Colleges Eastern (CCSC-Eastern) Programming Competition in October. They secured victory over 26 teams from 16 colleges and universities. Seniors Christina Haspert, Connor Levinson, and Zoe Quigley also competed as a team in the competition that was part of the CCSC-Eastern annual conference hosted by Bay Atlantic University in Washington, D.C. 

programming-competition-mountup-in-text.jpgThe Mount’s triumphant win marked an exciting post-pandemic return to the competition. Teams from Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia and Washington, D.C. worked under pressure with a time crunch on problems of which they had no prior knowledge. Additionally, they had to efficiently work as a team to get more than one problem done in the time allowed. “They led through much of the competition, but it was close for the entire three hours,” said Assistant Professor Ruth Lamprecht, Ph.D., who advised the students and accompanied them to the conference along with Assistant Professor Scott Weiss, M.S. 

programming-competition-scenicdetour-in-text.jpgFor two months, the students prepared for the competition by meeting to work through practice problems. Senior Graham Preston, from Frankford, Delaware, led these meetings to ensure that he and his classmates would be prepared. While Preston has over a decade of experience in programming, this was the first time he has competed in person with teammates. “The competition was a pretty exciting and fun experience altogether,” he said.  

After graduation, Preston plans to work for Jataware, a research and development firm specializing in software rapid prototyping and AI and machine learning development. He interned at the company last summer. Preston is majoring in computer science, mathematics, data science, cybersecurity and French with a minor in philosophy.  

All six Mount students would like to share their experiences with other interested students in the new Mount Programming Club as they seek continued success in future competitions.  

Jessalyn Powell, C'24