EECS Team Earns Top 10 Finish in 2017 Mid-Central Regional ACM International Collegiate Programming Contest

The group finished in 9th place out of 119 teams, and they solved some very challenging algorithmic problems in a very high-pressure situation.

Yiding Feng, Ruohong Zhang, & You Li

The WildWildCats, consisting of NU EECS Students Yiding Feng (2nd year PhD), Ruohong Zhang (5th year BS), and You Li (2nd year PhD) have placed 9th out of 119 teams in the 2017 Mid-Central USA Programming Contest, held on Saturday, November 4, at the University of Chicago. The regional contest represents the geographic area of Missouri, Arkansas, Illinois (including the Greater Chicago Metropolitan Area in Indiana), Kentucky, and Tennessee. Final Results

The team solved some very challenging algorithmic problems in a very high-pressure situation and faced some very stiff competition, including five teams from UIUC who trained with a world-class coach during a special one-credit course last Spring.

Head Coach Prof. Steve Tarzia remarked of his groups noble effort, "These contests do not just test of how quickly you can hack code. The problems require extensive CS knowledge, and inefficient solutions are not accepted."

For example, all 119 teams were stumped by this computational geometry problem:

Any students interested in competing in next year's competition, should should contact Prof. Steve Tarzia at You must be within five years of starting college (so you must be an undergraduate or first-year graduate). The contest is great practice for job interviews at the very best tech companies.