MATHCOUNTS - PENC Supporting Math Education

Each year, increasing numbers of schools are discovering MATHCOUNTS, a program that rewards students for excellence in mathematics. Hundreds of North Carolina students participate in MATHCOUNTS competitions held in February each year. This nationwide math competition for seventh and eighth graders is sponsored in North Carolina by PENC with the cooperation of the NC Department of Public Instruction, the NC Council of Teachers of Mathematics, and several corporate sponsors.


MATHCOUNTS prepares students for advanced mathematics courses and for careers in many technical fields, including engineering. The program offers our members a positive way to support and strengthen math education at the junior-high level. Our specific goals for MATHCOUNTS are:             
  • To increase students' motivation to be "math literate" by giving recognition to outstanding math students.
  • To educate the public about the importance of mathematics and the role math-oriented jobs play in our technological society.
  • To help strengthen math curricula in our schools.

How the Program Works

Each PENC chapter has a MATHCOUNTS chariman (listed in the right frame of this page) directing a committee to encourage school participation, produce publicity, secure local sponsors, and organize volunteers to run the chapter competitions. PENC provides each chairman with a Chapter Competition Planning Guide that recommends procedures for organizing the competition.

In August, PENC sends schools registration materials. Throughout the fall, teachers at participating schools coach their students and administer an in-school competition. These activities spur students to view math as challenging, rewarding, and fun.

In January, teachers administer a test to all students interested in becoming a member of the school's team. A team consists of four members, an alternate, and coach. Beginning in February, the teams compete at one of ten PENC chapter competitions held across the state.

Each competition consists of written and oral contests requiring both team and individual work. Team and individual winners are selected on the basis of the combined scores of the contests. The top-scoring teams at the chapter level advance to the state competition held in the Raleigh/Durham area in March. If the four top-scoring individual are not members of these top-scoring teams, they are also invited to compete at the state competition.

The four top-scoring individuals at the state competition form the North Carolina team enter the national competition in Washington, DC. All travel expenses to the national finals are paid by national MATHCOUNTS sponsors.

A MATHCOUNTS competition in progress.     

North Carolina Students are Winners

Teams from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico, Panama, the State Department and Defense Department Schools compete at the national level. North Carolina students consistently do well in the competition and always win from the experience even when they do not bring home a trophy.

Chapters report that MATHCOUNTS is the most exciting program initiated by NSPE in recent years. The program is an excellent opportunity to involve new members and is also attracting the support of our long-time members.

If you have not seen a MATHCOUNTS competition, don't miss out again! Many volunteers are needed on the actual day of the competition. A small amount of volunteered time can make a big difference with MATHCOUNTS.

Get involved in MATHCOUNTS

Contact your chapter representative today

National Website:

Local Contacts

What Chapter does my school/county belong to?

State MATHCOUNTS Coordinator
Name: David Phipps, PE
Company: Progress Energy
Phone: 919-708-2160

Central Carolina Chapter MATHCOUNTS Chairman
Name: Amit Sachan, PE, CFM
Phone:  919-985-1095

Eastern Carolina Chapter MATHCOUNTS Chairman
Name: Carl Bonner, PE
Company: Terracon Consultants, Inc.
Phone: 252-353-1600

North Piedmont Chapter MATHCOUNTS Chairman
Name: James Chandler, PE
Company: AC Corporation
Phone: 336-271-6306

Southeastern Chapter

Name: Bryan McCabe, PE
Company: Pender County Utilities.
Phone: 910-259-0212

South Piedmont Chapter MATHCOUNTS Chairman
Name: Tommy Sherard, PE
Company: Duke Energy Corp.
Phone: 704-382-7740

Western Carolina Chapter MATHCOUNTS Chairman
Name: Marc Worth, PE
Company: PSNC Energy
Phone: 828-670-3520

Northwest Chapter

Name: Jason Mitchell, PE
Company: I. L. Long Construction Co, Inc.
Phone: 336-661-1887

Central Piedmont Chapter MATHCOUNTS Chairman
Name: Bill Roberts, PE
Company: Duke Energy
Phone: (828) 323-2772

South Central Chapter MATHCOUNTS Chairman
Name: Doug Cooper
Company: Moorman Kizer & Reitzel Inc
Phone: 910-484-5191