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Suffolk School Notebook: LI teams named semifinalists in STEM contest

A team from West Hempstead High School is

A team from West Hempstead High School is among the semifinalists in Samsung's Solve for Tomorrow Contest for its plan to create biodegradable masks. Team members, from left, are Gloria Guerrier, Victoria Guerrier, Glenda Garcia, Steven Poirot, Tenoch Jaramillo and Alicia Maria. Credit: West Hempstead School District

Teams from Great Neck South and West Hempstead high schools are among 75 national semifinalists in Samsung's Solve for Tomorrow Contest for showing how their communities can be improved through the application of science, technology, engineering and math — also known as STEM.

Each school received a $15,000 prize package of Samsung technology and classroom resources, and the teams will now create videos exhibiting their process from the initial idea to creating prototypes. Ten national finalists and three national winners will be announced this spring.

Great Neck developed an approach to the early detection of user fatigue from prolonged time viewing screens, and West Hempstead proposed the creation of biodegradable face masks.

"We had a few other ideas, but when we came up with the biodegradable masks, we thought it was definitely the best one because of what's going on in the world," said West Hempstead team member Tenoch Jaramillio.

Great Neck's team members are Sarah Bernstein, Elia Botros, Isha Chugh, Andrew Dea, Sabrina DePaulis, Yonathan Eilon, Reid Fleishman, Benjamin Huh, Dana Kagan, Eden Katz, Eli Newman, Melody Song, Joy Yang and Olivia Yeung. West Hempstead's team members are Glenda Garcia, Glorida Guerrier, Victoria Guerrier, Tenoch Jaramillio, Alicia Maria and Steven Poirot.

MIDDLE ISLAND

New superintendent

Lance Lohman has been named superintendent of the Longwood Central School District, effective July 1. He will replace Michael Lonergan, who is retiring.

Lohman, who joined the district in 2013, is currently the district's director of curriculum for English language arts, math and science K-12. Before that, he was an assistant principal and a math teacher at Longwood High School.

"We must work together to transition from an air of uncertainty toward proactive solutions that allow our children to return safely to nurturing, supportive and fulfilling learning environments," Lohman said.

WESTHAMPTON BEACH

New superintendent

Carolyn Probst has been named superintendent of the Westhampton Beach School District, effective Aug. 17. She will replace Michael Radday, who is retiring.

Probst has served as assistant to the superintendent for educational services and student outcomes for the Hauppauge School District since 2017. Before that, she served as director of academic advancement and innovation for the West Hempstead School District and an assistant principal and guidance counselor at Westhampton Beach High School.

"I began my career in Westhampton Beach and returning to lead the district will be my great honor," Probst said.

ISLANDWIDE

U.S. Presidential Scholars

The U.S. Department of Education has named 34 Long Island students as candidates, based on their SAT or ACT scores, to become U.S. Presidential Scholars. They join five local students nominated by the New York State Education Department in December.

The White House Commission of Presidential Scholars selects scholars each spring based on factors including academic excellence, artistic success and community service.

Long Island's candidates and their schools are: Jonathan Mears, Centereach; Kevin Chen and Annabelle Hohne, Commack; Garett Nogid, East Meadow; Rithika Narayan, Elwood; Vimala Alagappan, Friends Academy; Ian Bailey, Garden City; Lauren Victory and Lauren Yu, Great Neck North; Bradley He, James Kim, David Wang and Zimi Zhang, Great Neck South; Ryan Teng and David Zhang, Herricks; Joanne Li and Justin Shen, Jericho; Joshua De Leeuw and Taylor Fox, Manhasset; Griffin Crafa, Northport; Hope Lane and Samantha Radinsky, Paul D. Schreiber; Brian Lee, Plainview-Old Bethpage JFK; Jayden Reilly, Sachem East; Michael Doboli and Andrew Mullan, St. Anthony's; Anoushka Dalvi, Lara Weinberg and Kevin Zhao, Syosset; Neil Mehta, Elizabeth Star and Nancy Zhong, Ward Melville; Jane Paulson, Westhampton Beach; and Yifang Zha, Wheatley School.

— MICHAEL R. EBERT

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