Twin sisters Gloria Guerrier and Victoria Guerrier ranked the top two in their class at West Hempstead Secondary School. Gloria Guerrier was named the valedictorian and Victoria the salutatorian for West Hempstead's Class of 2023. Credit: Newsday/Howard Schnapp

Twin sisters Gloria Guerrier and Victoria Guerrier, both seniors at West Hempstead Secondary School, share a talent for music, science and track and field.

The 17-year-old sisters learned Wednesday that they now share another designation — both have graduated at the top of their class. Gloria Guerrier was just named the valedictorian and Victoria the salutatorian for West Hempstead's Class of 2023. 

"Their character is really what makes them stand apart," said guidance counselor Jackie Zorskas, who is also their track coach. "They are the most hardworking, dedicated, independent and kind students that we have."

Year after year they have chosen and enrolled in the most rigorous advanced courses and never earned lower than a 100 on their transcript. They are three-sport varsity athletes and members of various clubs at school. Gloria graduated with a grade-point average of 105.3 and Victoria earned a 104.9.

Both are going to Yale University where they will be on the school's track team. They both want to study artificial intelligence. But they may not be roommates. The sisters are two of five children.

"We have been roommates forever," said Gloria. "It's best to venture out and meet new people and create our own circle of friends."

The twins have both earned All-County and All-State honors in both the winter and spring track seasons. They both have also qualified and competed at the New Balance National Championships during their junior year and were selected by coaches across Nassau County to receive the Section 8 Athlete of the Year award.

They are also involved with community activities as member of the Teen Council of the community library, a peer support program called Sources of Strength, Athletes Helping Athletes, New York State Music Association, and the New York University Step Up program.

They play in the school's orchestra and other musical ensembles. Victoria plays the cello and Gloria the viola. They are both in music honor societies.

And they both work in a local boutique. They had worked through much of their high school career at McDonald's.

"We are doing a lot. We love to multitask — it’s a talent we have," Victoria said. "In our spare time between practices we love to fill in with homework."

The sisters credit their parents who are both immigrants from Haiti for their inspiration. Their father, Jonas, earned a scholarship to Clemson University and became a science teacher until an illness sidetracked him from his career. He is now a nursing home resident, Gloria said. 

"He demonstrated the value of hard work and education and he came from a very poor family in Haiti," Gloria said.

Their mother, Marie Josee Noel, took on two additional jobs while working as a respiratory therapist when their father became sick in 2016, and she still managed to care for the twins and their siblings. Victoria said her mother worked very hard to give them opportunities.

They don't consider themselves in competition with one another. Rather, Gloria said it is like when "iron strengthens iron."

"We try to improve each other — not break us down," she said.

Zorskas said for all of their achievements, the sisters are very humble. 

"They are always surprised at how well they do," she said.

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