WEST HEMPSTEAD, Long Island (WABC) -- A high school on Long Island is celebrating an incredible achievement. This year's valedictorian and salutatorian are star students and star athletes, and they are also twin sisters!
The Guerrier twins are pretty unstoppable. The all-state track stars learned this week that Gloria will be this year's West Hempstead valedictorian, and Victoria will be this year's salutatorian.
They credit each other for help getting to the top.
"Being competitive as twins, we push each other," Victoria Guerrier said.
They also credit their hard-working mom, Marie, who says they have been competitive since they were in her belly together, and have been each other's coach, cheerleader, role model and occasional tutor.
"Subjects like AP physics. I'm always over there over her shoulder helping her, and maybe in English, she gives me a hand," Gloria Guerrier said.
"In essay writing, I think I'm the better writer," Victoria Guerrier said.
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Track coach and school counselor Jackie Zorskas said the girls impress her on a daily basis.
"It's rare that you come across not only one student like them but two students like them," she said.
The twins don't just work hard in school and on the field. Both have part-time jobs outside of school. They say they realized they wanted to help financially support their family when their dad became disabled by an Illness in 2016. They were only 11 years old.
"Growing up with immigrant parents from Haiti, I had a strong incentive to work really hard, to not waste the opportunity that they gave me," Victoria Guerrier said.
Their principal says Victoria and Gloria exemplify the American dream and have been role models since day one.
"Student-athletes who are genuinely kind-hearted people," West Hempstead Secondary School Principal Joe Pumo said. "They're musicians, they work, they have jobs, they're able to manage their time."
So how do they manage their time?
"I just keep myself in a positive space," Gloria Guerrier said. "I just keep grinding out what I need to do."
"Definitely. It got overwhelming at some point last year where I was like studying for SATs and APs and it just got so overwhelming," Victoria Guerrier said. "But I told myself just take it one minute at a time, I almost planned out every minute last year."
All that incredible planning and hard work have paid off. This fall they will be on scholarships at Yale University to study AI.
Their parents were born in Haiti and have five daughters who are American-born.
The twins recently authored a research project that did so well in a national competition that it won FDA approval and scored their school $15,000 for the science department.
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