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Feature Friday: Senior Patrick Feltes excels in mathematics

Sneh Pandya

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Whereas some students find their calling in the arts or athletics, students such as senior Patrick Feltes have found his in mathematics. For Feltes, this passion started at an early age as soon as he was exposed to the subject.

“I first noticed that I had a passion for mathematics in preschool when they taught me how to do addition. Something about it seemed great to me, so I asked the teacher to teach me more. From then on, I’ve always been passionate about it,” Feltes said.

Feltes is currently enrolled in Calculus 3–a two period, district-wide math class for students who particularly excelled at math and were able to move a year ahead. In addition to this, Feltes is the captain of the math team and also tutors students in high school and younger. He also does his own independent studies in math.

“Outside of school I spend a lot of time just learning a lot of new and interesting math. Right now I’m learning Real Analysis from Stephen Abbott’s Understanding Analysis,” Feltes said.

For students who might not share the same passion and appreciation for mathematics as he does, Feltes offers words of encouragement. He was recently awarded the John Benson Award at this year’s North Suburban Math League Competition, an award given to students that are enthusiastic about math and share this enthusiasm with their peers through tutoring and encouragement.

“Many people look at math and see it as a class that’s all about memorizing methods and formulas. While that is some of math, it’s not all of it. It’s much more about learning how to break down problems into simpler ones and find a logical thought process to solve something,” Feltes said.

After graduation, Feltes plans to attend the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign as a student in their internationally ranked College of Engineering.

“My current plans are to study computer science in college, but I want to continue learning more and more math. I might pursue a Ph.D in math afterwards, but I’m still undecided about that,” Feltes said.

Feltes looks forward to his future education endeavors and plans to continue developing his mathematical skills and interests as he moves forward.

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Feature Friday: Senior Patrick Feltes excels in mathematics