LSMSA students selected to take national physics exam

NATCHITOCHES, LA- The Louisiana School for Math, Science, and the Arts (LSMSA) has successfully registered students as test takers for the nationally recognized physics F=ma Exam focusing on mechanics, including kinematics, statics, Newton’s laws, momentum and energy, oscillations, orbital mechanics, fluids, and elementary data analysis. The exam will take place Tuesday, Feb. 15 at the school.

Students taking the exam include Adam Deslatte (’23) of Hammond, Joy Dong (’23) of Lake Charles, Sam Dugan (’23) of Mandeville, Liliana Geier (’22) of Mandeville, Joshua Gillet (’23) of Lake Charles, Reese Nordan (’23) of Lake Charles, Anh Pham (’23) of Ruston, Brandon Randle (’24) of Destrehan, and Julian Vertigan (’24) of Baton Rouge.

“Our school’s Physics teachers selected this group of students to take the F=ma Exam due to their high academic performance during the past Fall semester and due to their interest in Physics and the exam,” said LSMSA Associate Lecturer of Physics Dr. Mauricio Escobar.

The F=ma Exam is organized and sponsored by the American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT) and the American Institute of Physics. It is offered every year as the first step to qualify for the USA Physics Team Exam (USAPhO), which is a more rigorous exam used by AAPT to select the team that will represent the US in the International Physics Olympiads.

“It’s great to have a number of students representing LSMSA in the F=ma Exam,” said Escobar. “A dream come true would be to have some of our students scoring enough to take the USAPhO, and heaven on Earth would be to have one LSMSA student make it all the way to the US Physics team.”

LSMSA has educated highly motivated, high-achieving high school students from throughout the state since 1983. Inquiring parents and students may visit to learn more, complete online applications, and submit transcripts, ACT or SAT scores, and current teachers’ recommendations. For more information about this tuition-free, publicly funded residential high school, please visit

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