Three standout STEM students finished 1-2-3 and led Faith Lutheran’s top 25 senior scholars for academic year 2020-21. Jad Damaj was valedictorian and Luke Rendel and Liam Stumacher were co-salutatorians.
Faith Lutheran presented the annually published list in its annual magazine.
Faith Lutheran’s specialized academic programs include Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM); Justice & Advocacy, Business & Entrepreneurship, Film & Broadcast, Hospitality & Tourism, Christ Academy and the award-winning Conservatory of Fine Arts. The school aims to produce students who are intellectually flexible, civically conscious and socially responsible.
Damaj, who will attend the University of California, Berkeley, in the fall, was a member of Mu Alpha Theta Mathematics Honor Society, and tutored students from both the middle school and high school in math and science. Damaj, who said he plans to pursue a mathematics doctorate, continued to tutor peers even when the coronavirus pandemic forced the practice online to Zoom. Damaj was particularly proud to participate in the Rocket Club, for which he was co-president. He was also in the Math Competition Club, CyberPatriot, VEX Robotics, Key Club and Spanish Honor Society.
Rendel, who will attend Georgia Tech University and major in mechanical engineering, graduates from Faith with a STEM endorsement and has participated in many math-and-sciencerelated clubs. Like Damaj, Rendel was in VEX Robotics, Mu Alpha Theta, the Math Competition Club and the Science National Honors Society. At Faith, Rendel excelled in engineering and physics. In engineering, for example, he applied his knowledge to build working robots. Outside of school, he played keyboards for the worship team and led a children’s youth group at his church.
Stumacher, who will attend the Colorado School of Mines, aspires to an aerospace career. He cofounded Faith’s Rocket Club, played varsity tennis, junior varsity soccer and cross-country was in Student Council, band, VEX Robotics, Honors Institute and STEM Academy. Stumacher kept straight A’s through school and called Advanced Placement Physics 2 his favorite course.
Here’s the list of the other 22 students, in order.
4. Aden Jaeger, University of Southern California.
5. Camille Longabardi, Boston College.
6. Carina Kim, University California, Berkeley and Kenneth Thompson, Georgia Tech.
8. Christiana Vancura, Texas A & M
9. Owen Thompson, University of California, Berkeley.
10. Cory Murphy, University of Nevada, Reno
11. Emily Fung, University of Nevada, Reno.
12. Hayden Childs, Colorado School of Mines.
13. Joshua Gilmer, Duke University; Sung Yong Park, University of Nevada, Las Vegas; Ashley Michel, University of California, Los Angeles; and Morgan Stewart, University of Southern California.
17. Ava Ballagh, Michigan State University.
18. Sabrina Richards, University of San Diego.
19. Allison Landis, Arizona State University.
20. Lauren Tomita, University of Southern California.
21. Saige Schweitzer, University of Alabama and Ariana Sanatinia, Southern Methodist University
22. Caston Murphy, University of Notre Dame.
24. Joe Lobello, Boston College.
25. Mckenzie Ballif, University of Colorado, Boulder.
About Faith Lutheran Middle School & High School Faith Lutheran Middle School & High School is Nevada’s largest private school and the largest Lutheran school in the United States, serving more than 1,900 students from the Las Vegas Valley and abroad.
The school, nestled on a 50-acre state-of-the-art campus near Downtown Summerlin, offers advanced middle school and high school college preparatory curriculum and extensive athletic, fine arts, and after-school activities in a distinctively Christian environment.
Faith Lutheran’s unique high school academies program includes Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM), Justice & Advocacy, Business & Entrepreneurship, Film & Broadcast, Hospitality & Tourism, Christ Academy and the Conservatory of Fine Arts. The school is dedicated to its mission statement of Everyone Prepared! Everyone Saved! and is fueled by its core values of Family, Academics, Innovation, Truth and High Achievement.
Faith Lutheran is accredited by AdvancED and the National Lutheran Schools Accreditation. Learn more at www.faithlutheranlv.org
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