Category Archives: Academics

Duo qualifies for National Forensics League’s National Speech & Debate Tournament


Posted on March 25, 2014 by

Congratulations to Heather Pincus and Andrea Delgado, who placed second place at Virginia’s National Forensics League Tournament at Madison County last weekend. Their win qualifies the girls to compete at the National Forensics League’s National Speech & Debate Tournament.

Heather Pincus and Andrea Delgado display their place trophies.

Heather Pincus and Andrea Delgado display their trophies after Virginia’s National Forensic League Tournament.

McLean students perform well at Fairfax County Regional Science & Engineering Fair


Posted on March 18, 2014 by

McLean had an excellent showing at the Fairfax County Regional Science & Engineering Fair. Please congratulate the following students when you see them:

First Place Winners

Emma Haldane – Planarian Protection Program

Devika Shankardass – Different Salts’ Effect on Interior Temps

Second Place winners

Marielle Burt, Katherine Jolly, Isabel Zapata – Chemistry through a New Lens

Eloise LaRose – Electro-Conductive Concrete

Kevin Butler – Engineering an Improved P-90 Guitar Pick-up

Thomas Hearty – Sun Activity vs. Cosmic Ray Count

Hannah Moss – The Effects of Fertilizer Concentration on Algae

Connor Cason and Audrey Freeman – The Effect of Paneling on a Soccer Ball’s Flight

Third Place Winners

Isabel Delgado and Andrea Peabody – The Effect of Sugar Content on the Ethanol Amount

Alexander Klenk – Effect of Rotor Length on Quadracopter Flight

Aisha Singh – Cell Phone Radiation

Eliza Price – Optimal Feeding Schedule for Purple Pitcher Plants

William Kodoama – Shock Absorbing Sports Helmet

Emily Kong and Farren Shannon – The Effect of Different Milks on pH spoilage

Michelle Booth and Christine Nassar – Impact of Video games on Reaction Time

Honorable Mentions

Jennifer Hillock – The Effect of Temperature Luminol

Michael Mutersbaugh and Heather Pincus – A Sound Way to Make Electricity

Rachel Lawhead and Honora Logsdon – The Golden Ratio: Minor Coincidence of Perfect Fit

Michelle Vaccaro and Lauren Yeon – Effect of Light on Ripening Rate of Vitis Vinifera

Yearbook and The Highlander Online are National Scholastic Press Association Pacemaker finalists


Posted on March 14, 2014 by

I’m pleased to share with you that McLean’s yearbook is one of just 50 high school yearbooks nationwide to be announced as a Pacemaker finalist, and The Highlander Online at is one of just 28 high school news websites in the country to be declared a Pacemaker finalist. Since 1927, the National Scholastic Press Association’s Pacemaker competition has been considered by many to be student journalism’s highest honor.

Congratulations to yearbook adviser Meghan Percival, The Highlander Online/Newsmagazine adviser Lindsay Benedict, and all of the hard-working journalists we have at McLean!

Debate team places third for most debate wins in the area, two members headed to nationals


Posted on March 14, 2014 by

This season, the Debate team was ranked third for having the most debate wins among schools in Maryland, D.C. and Northern Virginia.

The team competed at Metrofinals at Broad Run last weekend, where Jamie Starr and Meredith Harris placed third. Wish them luck as they prepare for the national competition, which will take place in Chicago over Memorial Day weekend.

Congratulations to team sponsor Christina Shin and all of the Debate team members for their hard work this year:

Alexander Karimi and Hussain Jaffery
Maggie Lam and Leni Kagan
Andrea Delgado and Heather Pincus
Meredith Harris and Jamie Starr
Soobin Wang and Mia Chand
Brundha Akkupalli and Tina Chai
Susie Choi and Cynthia McMahan
Abraham Haji
Min Choe and Tanya Yoon
Michelle Ma and Matthew Steelberg
Ellie Allison and Jin Yong (Jeffrey) Yoo
Ashwin Dasgupta and Liam Zeya
Shivani Saboo and Esther Kim
Stephanie Su and Allison Meakem
Annabell Lee and Lilly Lee
Fatima Shahbaz and Jessica Boyer
Melanie Pincus and Anna Osguthorpe
Lucy Zheng
Naomi Jaffe and Aisha Singh
Mary Pottanat and Lucy Zheng
Sam Silverman and Sri Medicherla
Lia Compton and Crystal Cheung

Students take third in Science Olympiad regionals


Posted on March 14, 2014 by

The Science Olympiad team received third place in the regional competition. Science Olympiad teams compete in various events in the areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

Sci Oly regional 3rd place 2014

Congratulation to the following Science Olympiad members:

Sunhee Bae

Peter Steele

Alice Choi

Bob Saydahmat

Henry Howe

Harsha Malapati

Hussain Jaffery

Olivia Mooney

Adam Barth

Kaustabh Bose

Ivan Wong

Kyubin Lee

Michael Mutersbaugh

Shivani Saboo

SJ Sridhar

Hal Clark

Eric Tchong

Maggie Holland

Justine Wen

Elizabeth Xu

Students receive awards at DECA States


Posted on March 6, 2014 by

Thirty-three students won awards at DECA States in Virginia Beach last weekend, including three first place awards, which went to Isabel Cooper, Matt Pilsch and Viraj Sunderam. Students or groups who received a “Top 8” award are eligible to attend the International Career Development Conference in Atlanta, while “Top 15” indicates they received a high score on their test or event and are in a runner-up position.

Congratulations to all who competed! Here is the list of award winners:

Individual Events

Erin Calpin                                          Hotel & Lodging Management           Top 8

Isabel Cooper                                     Job Interview                                           1st place

Meg Garland                                       Business Finance                                     Top 15

Joshua Li                                             Automotive Services Marketing        Top 8

Cameron Lombardi                         Principles of Bus, Mgt. & Admin.      Top 8

Matt Pilsch                                          Principles of Finance                             1st place

Mike Robbins                                    Principles of Finance                             Top 15

Viraj Sunderam                                Social Media                                              1st place

Michelle Vaccaro                            Human Resource Management          Top 8

Annie Xie                                            Job Interview                                            2nd place

Team Events

Becky Ross & Sabrina Rozbicki                     Hospitality Services                Top 15

David McCarthy & Eric Wilcox                     Sports & Entertainment          Top 8

Emily McAuliffe & Rachel Wiener                Buying & Merchandising        Top 8

Logan Legg & Amanda Whitfield                 Marketing Communications    Top 8

Manuals/Written Events

Patricia deGuzman, Apiding Osika & Kayla Waysome     Fashion Merchandising Promotion     Top 8

Matt Bielomowicz, Robbie Buttarazzi & Elijah Levine       Entrepreneurship Innovation     Top 15

Matt Livingston, Reid Madison & Malieka Rehman     Entrepreneurship Promotion      Top 8

Hannah Ackleson, Nathan Neri & Mashana Sangdee       International Business Plan      Top 15

Manny Enriquez, Christi Geisler & Kuan Goh     Sports & Entertainment Promotion      2nd place

I am extremely proud to announce that McLean has three National Merit Scholarship Finalists and one National Achievement Finalist this year. Our National Merit Scholarship Finalists are seniors Adam R. Barth, Samuel Stone Clayton, and Elena R. Kagan. Our National Achievement Finalist is senior Sarah Biftu Gutema.

Seniors become National Merit Scholarship Finalists, National Achievement Finalist


Posted on February 19, 2014 by

Science Fair winners announced


Posted on February 10, 2014 by

We had a successful Science Fair on Thursday, Feb. 6, and I am proud to announce the following first place winners:

Student 1
Student 2

Behavioral & Social













Energy & Transportation



Energy & Transportation


Energy & Transportation


Engineering: E&M


Engineering: E&M


Environmental Science



Environmental Science


Mathematical Sciences



Medicine & Health


Medicine & Health


Esteban Baus




Physics & Astronomy


Physics & Astronomy



Physics & Astronomy


Physics & Astronomy


Plant Sciences


Plant Sciences



Plant Sciences


Plant Sciences


McLean students and teacher receive honors for financial literacy


Posted on December 16, 2013 by

McLean High School was recently named a Blue Star School by Working in Support of Education (w!se) for our students’  excellent performance on the 2012-13 w!se Financial Literacy Certification Test.

Janet Hohenberger, our personal finance teacher, received a Gold Star for her successes in teaching financial literacy. Keep up the great work, Janet!