Pine Crest School

Recent Posts

Advancing What’s Next for Pine Crest Students and Faculty

Posted by Pine Crest School on January 26, 2024 at 11:16 AM

Representing two legacy families, Stephanie (Basile) and Nick Economos, Jr. have been a part of the Pine Crest community since the late 1980s. 

Nick’s sister Elyse Parisi ’01 is a Pine Crest graduate, while Stephanie and her brother Sebastian attended Pine Crest from pre-kindergarten through eighth grade on the Boca Raton campus. As a former Pine Crest student, Stephanie said choosing Pine Crest for their children was an “obvious choice” but it took visiting the campus for Nick to agree. 

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Topics: Giving

A Lifetime of Smiles: Shawna Wanland Retires from Pine Crest After 24 Years

Posted by Pine Crest School on August 2, 2023 at 4:20 PM

Any Pine Crest student who has matriculated through pre-kindergarten on the Boca Raton campus in the last 20 years would likely recognize the words “pre-k” and “Ms. Wanland” as synonymous, with many recalling her friendly nature, bright smile, and warm hugs. As a member of the spirited, experienced, and enthusiastic pre-kindergarten team on the Boca campus, Ms. Shawna Wanland has retired from Pine Crest School after 24 years of service. 

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Topics: Lower School, Faculty, 2023

Recognizing Pine Crest School Coach Eileen Pliske

Posted by Pine Crest School on July 17, 2023 at 1:40 PM

Since joining the Pine Crest School community in 2006, Coach Eileen Pliske, Middle School Athletic Director on the Fort Lauderdale campus, led the varsity girls lacrosse program to 13 Florida High School Athletic Association (FHSAA) district championships and two regional championship titles. To speak only about the titles she has as a coach would diminish the impact she has had on student-athletes throughout her time here.

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Topics: Athletics, Faculty, 2023

Freshman Year at Pine Crest School: Three Things to NOT Worry About

Posted by Pine Crest School on July 6, 2023 at 10:25 AM

By: Danielle Keyes ’24

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Topics: Upper School, Student Life, Admission, Middle School, 2023

Glen Pierson ’23H Retires from Pine Crest after 29 Years of Service

Posted by Pine Crest School on June 21, 2023 at 12:06 PM

Glen Pierson ’23H, Assistant Head of Upper School and Dean of Students will retire this summer from Pine Crest School after 29 years. GP, as he is affectionately known by the students, began his career at Pine Crest in the Upper School science department as a chemistry teacher, although teaching was not always on Mr. Pierson’s radar. 

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Topics: Upper School, Athletics, Alumni, Faculty, Academics, 2023

A Return from the Wild to the Pine Crest School: Dr. Gabby Wild ’08

Posted by Pine Crest School on June 13, 2023 at 11:49 AM

By: Elani Kodner ’24

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Topics: Alumni, 2023

Meet Ben Weber ’23

Posted by Pine Crest School on June 12, 2023 at 4:03 PM

Joining the Pine Crest community in sixth grade, Ben Weber ’23 took advantage of what Middle and Upper School had to offer. He served as a positive force in and out of the classroom through his intellectual curiosity, enthusiasm, and hardworking nature.

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Topics: Innovation, Upper School, Science, STEM, outdoor learning, 2023

Meet Madison Huang ’23

Posted by Pine Crest School on June 12, 2023 at 1:56 PM

Madison Huang ’23 joined Pine Crest School as a freshman after attending science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) camp one summer. 

“I was able to work in the Zimmerman Family iLab, with different teachers,” she said. “The opportunities and resources that were available made me want to be a student here.”

STEM continued capturing Madison’s attention as an Upper School student. As a freshman, she applied to join the three-year social entrepreneurship program. 

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Topics: Innovation, Upper School, Student Life, Alumni, Entrepreneurship, STEM, 2023

Meet Christian Geter ’23

Posted by Pine Crest School on June 12, 2023 at 12:27 PM

Christian Geter ’23 joined Pine Crest School as a sixth grade student. Christian has been a student leader throughout his time in the Upper School, relying upon his quiet confidence and collaborative nature to represent his peers while working with School administrators. 

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Topics: Upper School, Student Life, Alumni, Student Leadership, Science, 2023

Meet Alexandra Gladding ’23

Posted by Pine Crest School on June 12, 2023 at 11:20 AM

By: Lindsey Keyes ’24

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Topics: Upper School, Athletics, Alumni, 2023

Meet Greer Udelson ’23

Posted by Pine Crest School on June 9, 2023 at 3:06 PM

Since joining Pine Crest School as a third grade student, Greer Udelson ’23 has been a standout student-musician. A singer in the chorus and musical performances, Greer also plays the flute in the band, which she joined in fourth grade. 

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Topics: Upper School, Student Life, Fine Arts, Student Leadership, 2023

Pine Crest Upper School Students Participate in Global Problem-Solving Institute Pilot Program

Posted by Pine Crest School on June 6, 2023 at 4:33 PM


By: Elani Kodner ’24

Fifteen (15) members from Pine Crest Upper School’s second-year social entrepreneurship program were invited to participate in the Global Problem-Solving Institute (GPSI) pilot program. The GPSI is a virtual innovation laboratory where high school students from across the globe collaborate to solve some of the world’s most challenging and complex problems. 

The pilot program was offered to three schools from the United States and one each from South Korea, Japan, Turkey, India, and Kazakhstan. Students had the opportunity to work on solutions for one of two societal issues: Disabling Non-Communicable Diseases or Food Fixes and the Climate Crisis. During the 12-week program, students gained knowledge in existing subject areas by exploring methodologies of environmental science, economics, and the psychology of persuasion to analyze the problems and formulate solutions. Students worked individually and collaboratively with peer schools and university professors worldwide using the design thinking methodology.


“Working with an international cohort of the GPSI has exposed us all to perspectives from diverse cultures,” said Troy Noesser ’24. “Having the opportunity to study disease prevalence and mitigation with international students allowed us to explore ideas and solutions that fit within a global context.”

Students in the Disabling Disease track worked with Dr. David Gatchel, Clinical Professor of Biomedical Engineering and Mechanical Engineering. Dr. Gatchel also serves as Director of the Manufacturing and Design Engineering (MaDE) program at Segal Design Institute, inside the McCormick School of Engineering at Northwestern University. Under his guidance, students mapped the biological, cultural, and behavioral factors contributing to the prevalence of noncommunicable and chronic diseases like cardiovascular illness, cancer, chronic respiratory pathophysiology, and diabetes. Students spent 12 weeks utilizing design thinking principles to develop a deeper understanding of core concepts in medical anthropology, psychology, neuroscience, and biomedical engineering to generate proposals to reduce the incidence of preventable diseases. 

“Working within an international cohort pushed me to view global issues through a cross-cultural lens,” said Gabrielle Frei ’24. “Through the sessions, we researched medical recommendations from around the world to create a curriculum that educates young students about the dangers of antibiotic resistance. We encompassed various biases from different cultural and psychological frameworks in order to address global perspectives regarding the use of antibiotics.” 

Students on the Food and Climate track worked alongside Dr. Leshui He, Associate Professor of Economics at Bates College. Together, they worked to map the food supply system and identify critical factors contributing to the problem. Their goal was to look at ways to alter consumption habits, reduce waste, and improve equitable access to food in an environmentally sustainable way. 


They presented their research to industry leaders within the fields of economics, political science, and environmental science. 

“I was able to deepen my understanding of climate change by analyzing the intersection between long-term shifts in temperature and weather patterns and food waste,” said Gimani Rose ’24. “Using an entrepreneurial mindset allowed me to better understand all stakeholder needs to propose innovative solutions to the problem of food waste.”

Although the pilot has ended, students can continue their research with professors and the global cohort. Several of them have visited Dr. Gatchell at Northwestern to learn more about biomechanical engineering and his innovation lab. The incoming juniors will begin a new program cohort in January 2024, including students from Ethiopia, Zimbabwe, and El Salvador.

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Topics: Upper School, Design Thinking, Academics, Student Leadership, Entrepreneurship, Future Ready, 2023

A Passionate Pursuit of Education

Posted by Pine Crest School on May 12, 2023 at 11:04 AM

By: Asha Gandreti ’25

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Topics: Upper School, Alumni, Faculty, 2023

Coach Chris Newbold Seizes An Opportunity

Posted by Pine Crest School on May 11, 2023 at 1:51 PM

By: Danielle Keyes ’24

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Topics: Athletics, Faculty, Middle School, 2023

Tooty Ta and Teaching: Ms. Jean Sungenis

Posted by Pine Crest School on May 10, 2023 at 9:55 AM

Pine Crest Lower School instructor Ms. Jean Sungenis, or Ms. Sunny as she is fondly referred to by her students, has been lighting up our classrooms since 2000. Originally from Vineland, New Jersey, she moved to South Florida in 2000. 

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Teaching with a Passion for Knowledge

Posted by Pine Crest School on May 5, 2023 at 9:39 AM

By: Sara Pearl Adler ’24

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Topics: Upper School, Faculty, Academics

Why Play and Exploration are Key for Young Students to Learn

Posted by Pine Crest School on February 27, 2023 at 1:53 PM

By Debra Jacoby, J.D.
Pine Crest Lower School Computer Science/Educational Technology

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Topics: Lower School, Innovation, Design Thinking

Five Tips and Tricks For Your Freshman Year at Pine Crest School

Posted by Pine Crest School on February 27, 2023 at 1:49 PM
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Topics: Upper School, Student Life, Admission, Academics, Student Leadership

Supporting Pine Crest Educators: The Chen Family

Posted by Pine Crest School on December 14, 2022 at 4:42 PM

We are honored to shine a spotlight on the Chen family, who generously donated $1.5 million toward the construction of the Center for Teaching and Learning on the Pine Crest School Fort Lauderdale campus. 

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Topics: Upper School, Student Life, Alumni, Giving, Pine Crest Fund, 2022

Outdoor Learning at Pine Crest School: A Fresh Approach

Posted by Pine Crest School on August 3, 2022 at 11:20 AM

Outdoor learning is expanding on Pine Crest School’s Boca Raton and Fort Lauderdale campuses allowing students and faculty to enjoy the countless benefits and lasting impact of outdoor education and play. 

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Topics: Lower School, Innovation, Academics, Science, STEM, 2022, outdoor learning