Olivia's Scholastic  table at NDCTE 2014

Olivia at the North Dakota Council of Teachers of English Conference.

Olivia Edwardson is not only your regional coordinator for the state of North Dakota, she is also incredibly close to the organizations that have partnered to bring the Awards to North Dakota. A 2011 graduate of North Dakota State University, her first teaching position was at a rural school in LaMoure, North Dakota. Olivia completed the Red River Valley Writing Project‘s Summer Institute in 2012, and has remained active in the site. Olivia volunteered to judge Region-at-Large entries for Scholastic in 2013, and when the Red River Valley Writing Project began talking about partnering with the Plains Art Museum to serve as the state affiliate, she volunteered to serve as Statewide Coordinator. She has taken an active role in promoting the Awards throughout the state and is having a great time, too! Read More

Wow! 2014 heralded in our first Crowdrise campaign and it was a lot of fun! Together we raised $43,465 – with donations still rolling in – to present programs, underwrite entry fees, award scholarships and connect with our alumni. From alum Lena Dunham’s tweet on Giving Tuesday to support the Awards to the Director of the Andy Warhol Museum, Eric Shiner, sharing the experience of alum Andy Warhol, we heard so many compelling stories from alums and friends across the country. From all of us at the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers…

Here are some highlights from our month-long campaign pulled together on Storify. We look forward to another year of record-breaking submissions. Let’s ring in 2015 with more art and writing!

(Psst. You can also still donate to our Annual Appeal before December 31, 2014 here!: www.crowdrise.com/2014annualappeal)



Dr. Kelly Sassi presenting with the Scholastic Awards at the National Writing Project Annual Meeting.

The Scholastic Awards national office is dedicated to growing affiliates across the country, including the Upper Midwest! Here’s the latest on the new statewide Affiliate Program in North Dakota! 


Students sharing their work at a Start.Write.Now workshop.

North Dakota is one of the least populated areas of the country and distances are far between its major cities and towns. Located on the high plains, North Dakota has had primarily an agricultural economy since statehood, but oil development of the Bakken fields on the western side of the state is rapidly changing the population and economy. “In a period of rapid change, art and writing are an important means of expression, and we want to promote the arts in North Dakota,” says Sassi.

Read More


Timothy H. Lee at work in his studio. Image courtesy of the artist.

We are happy to launch the first feature in our Alumni Story series. Every month we will highlight a Scholastic Art & Writing Awards alumnus who continues to approach their work and day-to-day life with the creative passion that was recognized when they first received their Scholastic Awards.

Timothy H. Lee received his Scholastic Awards in 2006 and 2008, and later received Educator Awards for his work with art students in the New York City area. A Korean-born New York-raised artist, Timothy studied Neuroscience, Drawing and Biology when he attended Wesleyan University. After graduating with high honors, he decided to postpone his medical ambitions in favor of becoming a full-time studio artist, and an Art.Write.Now.POP UP resident.

We could tell you all about Timothy’s beautiful watercolor pieces and the hypnotic process involved in the intricate cutouts that adorn his pieces, but we’ll let him tell you all about it instead! Read More

It has been a fast and furious month! We’ve seen an outpouring of support and cannot thank you enough for donating and sharing our campaign to raise $50K by December 2!

Today is #GivingTuesday and the last day of our fundraising campaign! Giving Tuesday is a movement to create a national day of giving to kick off the giving season added to the calendar on the Tuesday following Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Cyber Monday. We have one last push to raise our goal by midnight, 12/2.

We need YOU to help us raise $50K by midnight! Read More


Collecting #myAWaward videos from alumni and friends of the program has been an absolute joy for us here at the Alliance. Every day, we learn more about the reach and impact of the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards! We’ve been humbled and inspired to work even harder and find more creative teens. And now you’re totally inspired too. Yes. You.  You with the Gold Key pin. A certificate. The memory of you becoming suddenly and inextricably changed. Read More