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Welcome to Under 20 Mathematicians (UTM)

The objective of the Under Twenty Mathematicians (UTM) Programme is to identify, recruit and mentor young South African citizens to become mathematicians. The young citizens will be identified through South African schools. The idea is to choose at least one school in Gauteng Province and each neighbouring province .


1. Crypto Giants is still conducting Saturday classes in Winterveldt, Thulaganyo High School for both grade 8 and 9, 390 learners in total.
2. We have two camps in Welkom, 9-14 July 2018, with two schools, Lebohang Secondary School and Teto, with 200 and 350 Learners respectively. 
3. We have partnered with CHPC to conduct hardware courses for grade 11 learners with some of our partner schools in Cape Town, from 9-14 July 2018.
4. Photos taken at Thulaganyo School on 4 August 2018


Crypto Giants were running Saturday mathematics classes for grade 9 and 8 learners at Thulaganyo secondary school in Winterveldt, Pretoria North, in 2017. The total number of the learners who participated in this programme is approximately 120. The school has more than 330 learners in grade 9 for mathematics. Most could not come due to transport challenges. The classes were divided into five groups of 25 learners each.  This programme started in March till September. It will resume again in 2018, in February. The main aim of these classes is to encourage learners to choose pure Mathematics in grade 10, not mathematical literacy.

Crypto Giants in partnership with SAASTA  hosted three math and science spring classes in Free State (Welkom), Nanabolela Secondary school, Free State(Botshabelo), Lefikeng Secondary school and Gauteng (Meyerton), Meyerton High school for grade 10 and 11 learners. The total number of learners who attended these camps was approximately 600. In these camps, the Crypto Giants also ran the Mathematics awareness campaign, which is aimed at recruiting learners to study mathematical sciences.

Crypto Giants did their annual team building activity at Gold Reef City, in Johannesburg. Two Crypto Giants members, Mr Boitumelo Mahlobo and Mr Odirile Ntshudisani received honours funding from SARCHi chair, and Mr Ntshudisani in addition received funding to attend MASAMU programme and SAMSA conference in Tanzania, 16-26 November 2017.

Next year we plan to do more of the math and Science camps and bring a few learners on campus for mathematics day.


 Prof Jean Lubuma, Dean of the Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences, participated in a Mathematics awareness initiative that targets high school learners.Grade 12 learners from the Reitumetse High School in Soshanguve learning more about the Under Twenty Mathematicians programme Yvonne Mashaba Crypto Giant members, together with the founder of the Under Twenty Mathematicians (UTM) programme, 

Mathematics Awareness “Talent search”


High school learners are getting discouraged to continue with Mathematics because they think it’s hard and only for those that are considered super smart. Those that perform well in Mathematics do not consider it as a career.

The other challenge is Mathematics performance for these learners when they get to their first year at tertiary institutions. They seem to struggle bridging the gap between high school and university Mathematics. Many of the degrees require at least first year of Mathematics. 

Goals to address this challenge

• Act as role models in Mathematics.

• Correct the perception about Mathematics.

• Develop Mathematics study skills.

• Provide information on careers in Mathematical Sciences

• Present the application of Mathematics in other fields.

• Provide mentors for learners who study Mathematics in high schools.

• Provide tutoring for high school Mathematics learners.

• Market Mathematics as a subject and career choice to high school learners.

• Recruit learners to study degrees in Mathematical Sciences at South African Universities, in particular University of Pretoria.

• Motivate learners to do well in Mathematics and participate in National/International Mathematics Olympiads.

• Change learner’s attitude towards Mathematics.

Visits and Progress

In 2015 we launched a project to raise Mathematics awareness amongst high school learners in Gauteng and surrounding provinces. We targeted six schools but we only managed to reach four schools:

  • March 2015: Reitumetse Secondary School (Soshanguve) where we saw 100 Mathematics and Science learners from grade 12. Prof Jean Lubuma accompanied us.More detail
  • 8 May 2015: Tswaing Secondary School (Winterveldt) where we saw 110 Mathematics and Science learners from grade 11. Two members of the Crypto Giants are from these schools.
  • 15 August 2015: Nomsa High School (Vaal) where we saw 64 Mathematics leaners from grades 11 and 12
  • 15 August 2015: Meyerton High School (Vaal) where we saw 80 Mathematics leaners from grades 11 and 12
  • Mathematics and Science center in Diepkloof, Soweto where we saw 150 Mathematics

Team Building trip

On 29 April 2015, we had a team building trip to Gold Reef City in Soweto, with twenty of the Crypto Giants members, using two Mini-Bus taxis.

South African Mathematics Team Competition 2015

15 September 2015

The 2015 Southern African Mathematics Team Competition (SAMTC) was held on 12 September. This is the yearly event where the top mathematical high school learners compete against each other on provincial level. Teams are decided on the ground of learner achievements in the second round of the SA Maths Olympiad, and the Siyangoba programme.

Two junior and two senior teams participated this year as the Gauteng North representatives. Gauteng North traditionally provides fierce competition to the other provinces. This year our Senior A and B teams came respectively 2nd and 12th from 47 teams and the Junior A and B teams 10th and 16th from 49 participating teams countrywide. Congratulations to these learners on an excellent performance!

The team manager was Ruaan Kellerman and the Siyangoba coaches were Harry Wiggins, Eben Maré and Hannes Haasbroek. To find out more on how SAMTC works, please go to

Results for the competition are available at


Senior A team


Senior B team


Johannes Conradie Gr10 Hoërskool Zwartkop, Ulrik De Mûelenaere Gr12 Hoërskool Waterkloof, Emile Du Plessis Gr12 Die Hoërskool Menlopark, Pieter Kok Gr12 Hoërskool Centurion, Lucien Magliolo Gr12 Midstream College, Duncan Matthys Gr11 Midstream College, Mpho Nkwana Gr11 Clapham High School, Armand Oberholzer Gr12 Die Hoërskool Menlopark, Jeffrey Russell Gr12 Pretoria Boys High School, Malesela Masenya Gr12 Pretoria Boys High School


Frikkie Du Toit Gr12 Hoërskool Centurion, Amy Gouws Gr12 Pretoria High School for Girls, Heng Jia Guo Gr12 Midstream College, Taeeun Kim Gr11 Pretoria High School For Girls, Yesub Lee Gr12 St Alban's College, Elana Marais Gr11 Hoërskool Waterkloof, Chris Stevenson Gr11 St Alban's College, Pieter Swart Gr11 Midstream College, Karen Venter Gr10 Afrikaanse Hoër Meisieskool, Heng Rui Guo Gr12 Midstream College

Junior A Team


Junior B team


Oussama Bera Gr8 Star College, Rynhard Fourie Gr8 Midstream College, Stephan Geyser Gr9 Afrikaanse Hoër Seunskool, Carike Goede Gr9 Gereformeerde Skool Dirk Postma, Ruben Grobler Gr8 St Alban's College, Taesung Kim Gr9 Pretoria Boys High School, Dricus Oerlemans Gr9 Die Hoërskool Menlopark, Halloran Stratford Gr8 Pretoria Boys High School, Nine-Marie Van Veijeren Gr9 Die Hoërskool Menlopark Gideon Van Zyl Gr9 Hoërskool Die Wilgers


Werner Bronkhorst Gr8 Pretoria Boys High School, Gabriel Dos Santos Gr9 St Alban's College, Robbie Johnson Gr8 Hoërskool Waterkloof, Usaamah Makda Gr8 Al-Asr Educational Institute, Brendan Pretorius Gr9 Pretoria Boys High School, Frederik Senekal Gr8 Hoërskool Die Wilgers, Carl Smith Gr8 Star College, Nienke Turkstra Gr9 Die Hoërskool Menlopark, Michael Van der Merwe Gr9 Midstream College, Donald Van der Westhuizen Gr8 Midstream College, Anton Van Wyk Gr9 Hoërskool Waterkloof


(Names are listed starting at the left hand side of the back row from left to right)


For the year 2014 the UTM conjucated its effort with the Crypto Giants initiative to establish partnerships with some schools in Soshanguwe and Mamelodi where potential students can be attracted for the programme.

South African Mathematics Team Competition 2014

13 September 2014










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Last edited by Rachel CombrinkEdit