CodeWars: Students place in programming competition

Arim Lee, Staff Writer

A team consisting of three students taking the Computer Science course competed in the Hewlett-Packard CodeWars on March 7. This competition is one of the biggest programming contests and the students placed fourth in the novice category.

Junior Casey Hopper was part of the novice team sent out to compete. This year is his first in a Computer Science course, but he still had a lot of opportunity to practice before the big competition thanks to Computer Club.

“We met almost every Wednesday,” Hopper said. “We did practice problems and we’ve had other competitions throughout the year. This one was biggest though.”

Casey Hopper, Nikhil Pandeti, and Jeremy Doan pose with their CompSci teacher Ms.Gallatin holding their trophies."When we won, I felt really happy," Doan said.  Submitted by Ms.Gallatin
Casey Hopper, Nikhil Pandeti, and Jeremy Doan pose with their CompSci teacher Ms.Gallatin holding their trophies.”When we won, I felt really happy,” Doan said.
Submitted by Ms.Gallatin

Through past experience and practice, Hopper could safely say he was pretty confident going into the CodeWars competing against 200 other teams from all over Texas and beyond.

“We were really happy about the fact that we were able to place when there were so many teams,” Hopper said.

Hopper says that he really enjoys computer science. His father was a computer science major and he thinks it is a great career.

“I like math and science,” Hopper said. “Computer science is all about solving problems and logic.”

Jeremy Doan, although a senior, is also a first year CompSci student, putting him in the novice category.

“The problems in contests are always really interesting,” Doan said. “It always takes a special mentality and train of logic in order to solve CompSci problems, so I guess that’s always been an interesting challenge for me.”

According to Doan, the competition for him was something new because it was so big.

“I felt a little nervous at first, but after a few cups of coffee and some successful solutions we were able to settle into a rhythm and find our comfort zone,” Doan said. “When we won, I felt really happy. This was my first computer science contest all year, so it was nice to place so high my first time.”

Doan plans to go into the medical field, so while computer science was not a required course for him, he still believes that it is helpful in different ways.

“It doesn’t have any direct, practical uses, but it does help by forcing me to look at problems and solve them from a different perspective,” Doan said. “Coding is a really useful skill to have, regardless of what you want to do in life.”