NY Congressman Invites Homeless NY Science Whiz to State of Union Address

By the Associated Press | January 17, 2012 | 10:40 AM EST

Intel Semifinalist Samantha Garvey, 17, is all smiles after Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone announced the placement of the homeless Garvey family into a three bedroom home in neighboring Bay Shore, during a news conference, Friday, Jan. 13, 2012, at Brentwood High School in Brentwood, NY. Garvey is one of 61 students who have a chance at the competition's top prize of $100,000. The 17-year-old and her family moved into a homeless shelter on Jan. 1. . County official Steve Bellone says Garvey and her family can move into the house in about 10 days. ( AP Photo/John Dunn)

BRENTWOOD, N.Y. (AP) — A homeless New York teen who's a semifinalist in a prestigious national science contest has been invited to watch President Barack Obama's State of the Union address.

Brentwood High School senior Samantha Garvey has been invited to the Jan. 24 speech as a guest of Long Island Congressman Steve Israel.

Garvey's story of academic success despite financial hardships has gained nationwide attention.

Last week, she was named one of 300 semifinalists in the Intel science contest. She's currently living in a homeless shelter, although Suffolk County officials are renovating a home for the Garvey family.

Israel says he was moved by the aspiring marine biologist's story.

He's offered Garvey a prestigious gallery ticket. Her parents would watch from Israel's office.

Her father tells Newsday (http://bit.ly/xsVYo8) they'd love to go.


Information from: Newsday, http://www.newsday.com