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.

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