October 15, 2013 (Toronto, ON)

Calgary student, 19, solves decades old mathematics problem.

Hunter Spink, a 19-year-old mathematics student at Trinity College, Cambridge University, has solved a combinatorial conjecture that has baffled top mathematicians from around the world for decades.

Hunter solved the problem while working at Cambridge during the summer months. The solution is available in pre-publication form here.

Hunter is a graduate of Western Canada High School and is a Blyth Cambridge Commonwealth Trust Scholar at Cambridge University.

He first showed his academic potential in Grade 6 when he solved a numbers problem. In Grade 8, he devised a method for computing base 2 logarithms by hand. In Grade 9, he placed second in the Asian Pacific Mathematics Olympiad which pits the top high school students in Asia Pacific against each other. This won him a place at age 15 on the Canadian Math Olympic team, and at 16 he won the United States Mathematical Olympiad.  Later that year, he won the gold medal at the International Math Olympiad.

At 17, Hunter won the Blyth Cambridge Commonwealth Trust Scholarship. The scholarship program provides admission and full support to up to four Canadians annually to do their undergraduate degree at Cambridge.

Cambridge University is consistently ranked as one of the world’s top universities. Founded in the 13th Century, its affiliates have won more Nobel Prizes than any other institution in the world.

For more information, please visit or contact Brandon Kerstens at Blyth Cambridge Commonwealth Trust Scholars at or at 416-471-8770.

Though our physical doors remain temporarily closed, the minds of our students stay open. Summer classes are continuing to meet on their regular daily schedules, in virtual classrooms with face-to-face instruction and peer interaction.  The Blyth Academy model of small class sizes, flexible scheduling and individualized approach have enabled us to remain faithful to our standards. Our commitment to ongoing and meaningful communication between school, teachers, students and families has been critical to this effort.

Although our students have transitioned into summer mode and COVID-19 restrictions have begun to loosen, we are looking ahead to what September will hold for our campuses and families.
We want to be clear - our preference and our priority is to get students back to our campuses, but we must ensure this is done in a safe and effective way. While we await official guidance from Public Health and the Ministry of Education, a "return to school" task force has been hard at work putting concrete operational plans in place for all likely scenarios. This includes a full return to campus with safeguards, a blended model of virtual and in-campus learning and the continuation of fully virtual classrooms. All scenarios will provide robust learning and live, daily instruction and interaction with teachers and peers. 
With ten campuses across Ontario, we realize that each one of our schools is a unique space and community. We will be implementing across-the-board policies on hand washing, facility cleaning and social distancing measures. Each school is also prepared to pivot individually based on the guidance of local health authorities and to best serve students and families. 
Our recent survey showed that over 80 per cent of Blyth Academy families are eager to return to campuses, and we are hard at work to prepare for this day. As September's scenario becomes clearer and more information becomes available, we will continue to communicate. 

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