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Elizabeth Galinis, a science teacher at Hayfield Secondary School, received a $25,000 Milken Family Foundation National Educator Award during a surprise assembly Feb. 28 in the school gymnasium.

Superintendent of Public Instruction Patricia Wright and Milken Family Foundation co-founder Michael Milken presented the award.

The educator awards recognize and reward elementary and secondary school teachers, principals and specialists who promote excellence and innovation in public education. Galinis is the 39th Virginia educator to be recognized with the award since 1999.

At Hayfield, Galinis teaches geosystems courses to juniors and seniors, leads the Advancement via Individual Determination college-readiness program and has served as the departmental collaborative learning team leader.

In a congratulatory letter, Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D) praised Galinis, saying, “You have clearly demonstrated your commitment to promoting excellence and innovation in public education.”

“Galinis is known for the passion she brings to teaching and for how she connects with students by incorporating their interests and experiences into her lesson plans,” Wright said.

A classroom instructor since 2007, Galinis was a finalist for Fairfax County Public Schools’ 2013 Teacher of the Year. She earned a bachelor’s degree in marine science from the University of South Carolina in 2001, a master’s degree in environmental science and policy from Johns Hopkins University in 2007, and a master’s in education, curriculum and instruction from Virginia Tech in 2009.

A panel appointed by each participating state’s education department recommends educators without their knowledge for Milken Family Foundation awards. Since 1987, the foundation has distributed more than $64 million to some 2,600 educators across the country, including $975,000 in Virginia.

Annandale student named national scholar

Amanda Harbison, a student at Northern Virginia Community College, is one of 51 community college students from the United States, Canada and American Samoa who have been named 2014 New Century Scholars.

The Annandale resident will receive a $2,000 scholarship and be recognized at the American Association of Community Colleges Convention in April in Washington, D.C.

“Everyone at NOVA joins me in congratulating Amanda on earning this national honor,” said NOVA President Robert G. Templin Jr. “She is an excellent representative of our student body.”

Harbison, 21, was 2011 valedictorian at Falls Church High School. She is studying biotechnology at NOVA’s Manassas Campus and plans to transfer to George Washington University or Virginia Tech after graduating this summer.

The New Century Scholars program is sponsored by The Coca-Cola Foundation, Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation, Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society and the American Association of Community Colleges. More than 1,700 students were nominated from about 900 community colleges.

Vienna percussionist to debut at Carnegie Hall

New York’s Carnegie Hall has selected 120 outstanding young musicians from across the country to come together this summer as the second annual National Youth Orchestra of the United States of America.

Tyler Cunningham of Vienna, who plays timpani and percussion, is one of the musicians.

After a comprehensive audition process, Carnegie Hall recognized the members of the 2014 orchestra — all ages 16-19 — as being among the finest players in the country.

Cunningham has been a principal percussionist with the American Youth Symphonic Orchestra.

In July the student musicians begin an intensive two-week training at Purchase College, State University of New York, working with principal players from some of the country’s best professional orchestras.

With American conductor David Robertson and virtuoso violinist Gil Shaham, the NYO-USA will embark on an eight-city tour, with the orchestra’s debut at Carnegie Hall on July 22. The tour culminates at The Music Center’s Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles on Aug. 4.

Tickets for the Carnegie Hall concert go on sale April 15. For more, visit

College credits

These students have been named to the first semester 2013-2014 dean’s lists at their respective colleges and universities.

Colby College, Waterville, Maine: Olivia Collins of Dunn Loring, and Margaret Hefferon of McLean.

Colgate University, Hamilton, N.Y.: Cristina Chilstrom and Aidan Mosley of Alexandria; Eliana Brown of Annandale; Samuel Ellis of Falls Church; John Metelski of Great Falls; Melissa Benton of Herndon; Nicholas Angus, Katherine Brittin and Allison Pool of McLean; Alexandra Gadiano of Reston; and Macy Warren of Springfield.

Miami University, Ohio: Megan Elliott and Megan Riedel of Centreville; Mackenzie Morgan of Herndon; Erica Howes and Jacqueline Marcotte of Fairfax; Allison Schulman of Falls Church; Gabriel Levine and James Williams of McLean; and Hailey Stafford and Jonathan Trainer of Vienna.

University of Iowa, Iowa City: Brenna Oates and Hanna Busse of Fairfax, and Jessica Graff of Vienna.

University of Kansas, Lawrence: Hayley Davis and Grace Martin of Centreville; Jacqueline Kleger of Falls Church; Hannah Dimmick of McLean; and Jayne Clinkenbeard of Springfield.

University of the Sciences, Philadelphia: Joseph Ellis of Fairfax, Benjamin Le of Oakton, and Sun Park of Springfield.

55 chosen for honors chorus

Fairfax County Public Schools will send 55 of its students to sing with the 2014 Virginia American Choral Directors Association Middle School Honors Chorus. Ten students were selected as alternates. The group performs April 27 in Harrisonburg.

Carson: Yuria Liu, Anisha Loganathan, Robert Owens, Sophia Song, Madeline Vlattas, and alternates Ivanna Dudala and Nicholas Highman.

Franklin: Arden Titus and Parker Waters.

Frost: Olivia Brennan, Rachael Cranston, Brigid Cryan, Angelo El Gamal, Jensa Foley, John Hopewell, Zein Karam, Marie Korn, Victoria Lee, Grace Pho, Ryan Walsh, Adam Zemp, and alternates Sage Boucher, Caleb Royce and Kayley Snyder.

Herndon: Allison Lytle and alternates Abigail Freeman and Hannah Overton.

Hughes: Lauren Spar.

Jackson: Kenta Deegan, Julia Ferri, Anna Goodin, John Hession, Patrick Kearney, Casey Knepley, Sebastian Marulanda, Emma Mehigan, Netra Sivanandan, Kazunori Yoshizaki and alternate Eric Vu.

Kilmer: Brendan Dudding and Will Morrison.

Lanier: Ashley Abrahamson, Ryan Casey, Claire Dunn, Mikaela Fenn, Jordan Hicks, Kimberly Munguia, Madison Phipps, Evan Strong and Jacob Yim.

Liberty: Allen Bong.

Rocky Run: Nathaniel Fitzgibbons, Mason Joiner, Minsuk Kang, Kristine Lowkis, Max Sanchez, Ashlyn Thomas, and alternate Andrew Wang.

Sandburg: Beatrice DiFolco, Sarah Lore, Erin McAllister, Elena Perkins, and alternate Brendan DeBie.

South County: Olivia Chaves and Nicole Kiser.

For the Cookie Monster in all of us

Several Girl Scout troops will be selling Thin Mints, Samoas, Trefoils and more at booths this month.

Troop 3604 will be at Wal-Mart, 13059 Fair Lakes Shopping Circle in Fairfax, from 3 to 5 p.m. March 8.

Three troops will staff booths March 15.

• Troop 4156: IHOP, 13810 Braddock Road in Centreville, from 9 to 11 a.m.

• Troop 1791: Petco, 9230 Old Keene Mill Road in Burke, from 10 a.m. to noon.

• Troop 3604: Giant Food, 5740 Union Mill Road in Clifton, from 3 to 5 p.m.

To find a Girl Scout Cookie booth, visit The Girl Scouts Nation’s Capital cookie sale ends March 30.