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About the Macalester College Problem of the Week

About the Problem of the Week

Stan Wagon, a professor in the Mathematics and Computer Science Department at Macalester College, poses a mathematics problem to his students every week. The Problem of the Week tradition was started in 1968 by the late Professor Joe Konhauser. Professor Wagon took over in 1993. Since the problems are meant to be accessible to first-year college students, very little background is needed to understand or solve them.

These problems are also sent out by electronic mail. To join the mailing list, send a message to:

with just the words
    subscribe macpow
in the body.

To leave the mailing list, send a message to:

with just the words
    unsubscribe macpow
in the body.

In addition to the Problem of the Week, Professor Wagon also organizes the annual Konhauser Problemfest.

Professor Wagon was on sabbatical during the 1996-97 academic year. While he was gone, the PotW was chosen and distributed by Tom Halverson (

About the Archives

The problems are added to the archives as they are distributed through the mailing list. At the request of Professor Wagon, solutions are posted one week after distribution and are accessible for the rest of the semester. Before Fall 1998, the archives were maintained by Jeff Erickson (University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign).

The Math Forum
19 October 2006