USA TODAY has named Thomas S. Wootton High School senior Nicki Lehrer to its ALL-USA High School Academic Team, one of 20 students from around the nation selected by a panel of judges on the basis of their academic achievements, leadership and activities, and how well they used their intellectual skills beyond the classroom.
Two other MCPS students were named to a second-level team of 20 students, Anatoly Pregel from Montgomery Blair High School, and Kevin Wei Gan, from Wootton High School. Twenty students were named to a third team and 51 students received honorable mention.
The three MCPS students are the only students in Maryland on the three ALL-USA teams, and no other school system in the country had as many as three students represented on the teams.
Featured in today’s edition of USA TODAY [Thursday, May 15], Lehrer will receive $2,500 and a trophy as a representative of all outstanding students. ALL-USA first team members were selected from 1,625 students nominated from schools nationwide.
Lehrer, a top student at Wootton High School with a GPA of 4.0, plays classical guitar and has several CDs and appearances at the Kennedy Center Millennium Stage to her credit. She excels in science and was a regional representative on the Junior Engineering and Technical Society. She also has been awarded a patent for a book cover with handles. Among other activities, she has tutored learning disabled students and was a student advisor in designing a signature humanities program at her school. Lehrer will attend the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the fall.
Preygel is a 4.0 GPA student in the Science, Math, Computer Science Magnet Program at Montgomery Blair High School. He placed third in the national Intel Science Talent Search for his research on quandle cocycle invariants, is a three-time Math Olympiad qualifier, and received 1600 on the SAT.
Gan has a 3.9 GPA at Wootton High School and also scored 1600 on the SAT. He placed second in the national Siemens Westinghouse Competition for his research on the superconductivity of lithium, which was published in Science magazine.
Among the first team winners are eight girls and 12 boys. There are four Presidential Scholars, two Eagle Scouts, seven Intel Science Talent Search finalists, and seven who were regional finalists or higher in the Siemens Westinghouse Competition in Math, Science and Technology.