MATH LIFE: The William Lowell Putnam Mathematical Competition

The Mathematical Association of America’s (MAA) William Lowell Putnam Mathematical Competition is an annual contest for college students established in 1938 in memory of its namesake. Cash prizes for the top five teams in recent years ranged from $25,000 to $5,000. Recent cash prizes for the top five individuals have been $2,500 each. Below the individual winners for each year are listed in alphabetical order. The Elizabeth Lowell Putnam Prize was established in 1992 to be "awarded periodically to a woman whose performance on the Competition has been deemed particularly meritorious". Recent winners of the Elizabeth Lowell Putnam prize have received $1,000. Over the years many of the winners of the Putnam competition have become distinguished mathematicians. A number of them have received the Fields Medal and several have won the Nobel Prize in Physics. The USC Department of Mathematics Undergraduate Mathematics Honor Society (Pi Mu Epsilon) fields a Putnam team annually. Students compete both as a team representing the department and the university and for individual awards. The team is coached by Professors Richard Arratia and Sergey Lototsky.