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Meet Fatima Maikusa, the maths genius who won Mathematics medals across the world


Meet Fatima Maikusa, the maths genius who won Mathematics medals across the world

15-year-old Fatima Adamu Maikusa has set an exceptional record after winning seven Mathematics medals in different competitions across the world. Fatima, who has become a role model to many girls, started displaying her mathematical strength at the age of nine.

Fatima is from Gombe State, Nigeria, and is currently an SSS 3 student at the Nigerian Tulip International School (NTIC) in Kano, Nigeria. In this interview with Daily Trust Saturday, she speaks about her inspirations, aspirations and experience so far, having won seven international medals in mathematics.

My name is Fatima Adamu Maikusa and I am the winner of the American Mathematics Competition (AMC 08), International Eduversal Mathematics Competition, Jakarta, Indonesia, International Math Challenge, Bangkok Thailand and Kangourou Sans Frontiers – KSF mathematics competitions.

I also won the Future Intelligence Students Olympiad (FISO), Mathematics without Borders, Bulgaria and Komodo Math Festival, Indonesia.

I have loved math since my primary school days. I think it is because it’s one of the easiest subjects and I enjoy it.

So many students hate math, why did you say it’s the easiest?

If you do not know how to do something, you say it’s hard and you get frustrated and hate it. Maybe they don’t get to see the other side of it. They are seeing the difficult side.

Were you taught mathematics by anyone at home besides school?

No. I don’t even have extra tutors at home.

So, it’s inborn?

Yes, it’s a natural thing.

Maybe your mother?

No, I don’t have any extra lessons apart from the one in school but I have practised more since I was in primary school. Because I love maths, I frequently practise it. I have been doing it on my own.

What was the experience like participating in those competitions you won?

Some of them were difficult but then, but we passed. It was nice being on the stage, I felt like I had achieved something already. It was fun.

READ ALSO:14-year-old Gombe girl sets record with 7 int’l medals in mathematics

I was kind of nervous initially but I wanted to win those medals because I want to go to Harvard University and they said I need to do so, as part of my requirements.

How did you feel when you were announced the winner?

I felt so happy. At some point, I saw the victory coming but to a larger extent, I wasn’t seeing myself coming out victorious. It was a surprise.

Who are your role models?

My parents, teachers and all successful people who have made it in life.

What are your future aspirations?

I want to be a computer programmer at Harvard University, God willing.

Why computer programming, because it involves calculations?

Yes, I love it. I want to break records and also contribute by making inventions and solving, especially those related to the depletion of the ozone layer, global warming and other issues that can help ease the problems of humans.

What are the things that helped you develop your skills in mathematics?

Things that helped me are the Olympiad camps I went through during my junior and senior classes.

When I wanted to do programming, I improved my skills through informatics classes and also by participating in mathematics camps.

I want to thank my teachers and my school. They helped me a lot. They made me go through classes that helped me improve.

Finally, to my parents, especially my father who stood by my dream. I am going through the processes of my admission at Harvard and he is committed to it.

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