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Fruit Fantasia, Painting by Cristina Gonzalez

Earlier this year, we announced our first educator residency, made possible through a partnership with Golden Artist Colors and the Sam & Adele Golden Foundation. We invited teachers whose students, past or present, received a Scholastic Award to apply for this unique opportunity and we were astounded by the number and quality of the submissions! Educators from across the country sent in applications that were thoughtful, inspiring, and filled with outstanding artwork. Choosing the three teachers to participate in the residency was not an easy task, and we felt honored to have the chance to get to know so many of the teachers who help make the Scholastic Awards possible.

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National Events The Scholastic Awards National Events gets better and better each year! We started this year off with a Social Media Scavenger Hunt where we asked students to start posting pictures with the hashtag #goldkey as soon as they left home for New York City. During check-in, students and educators posted messages thanking those who helped them with their art and writing and made the trip to New York possible. June 11 was the big day: the National Ceremony at Carnegie Hall! This year’s Ceremony was like no other, with wonderful special guests such as Whoopi Goldberg, Matthew Morrison, Chelsea Clinton, Michelle Tan from Seventeen magazine, 2015 Alumni Achievement Honoree Donald Lipski, artist Tom Otterness, poet Vijay Seshadri, and YouTube personality JennXPenn. All the while, students and educators to kept tweeting, Instagramming, Facebooking, and Tumbling throughout the events, so all of social media was on fire with posts about the 2015 National Ceremony! Read More

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAYou know the drill: everyone goes around the circle and says their name, where they’re from, and some “interesting fact” about themselves. It’s standard first-day-of-school-or-camp-or-other-student-activity procedure. Meanwhile you sit there, the very last person in the circle, knowing that there’s really no way you could remember all these names anyway, but especially not now since all you can do is focus on coming up with that one “interesting fact.” It has to be something unique and memorable (because first impressions are important), but not something too weird (because first impressions are important), and it should by no means evoke any kind of follow-up question (because second impressions are even more important, and you’re just not ready for that yet). Then there’s the pressure of going last—these people are expecting some grand finale, and really how can you beat “I once went skydiving with my grandpa” kid? Flustered, you end up blurting out something (like: “I’m a fan of Netflix” or “my favorite color is aquamarine”) that, while important, doesn’t really define you (except that now it does—you will be “aqua girl” in the minds of all your peers for at least the next few hours).

That’s kind of how I feel right now.

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IMG_17491The National Events season of the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards kicked off in New York City on Friday, June 5, with an opening reception for the Art.Write.Now.2015 National Exhibition, which runs through June 14 at Parsons School for design at The New School and Pratt Institute’s Pratt Manhattan Gallery.  This coming week will be filled with many more great events and activities to celebrate the 2015 National Medalists!
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Drained, Drawing & Illustration by Aylen Mercado

Drained, Drawing & Illustration by Aylen Mercado

One of the recurring themes we saw in the entries to the 2015 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards was the struggle minorities face in the United States. From stories of police brutality to the plight of migrant workers, the students tackled these difficult subjects in their art and writing. Portfolio Gold Medalists  Trace DePass and Aylen Mercado used the people around them, the neighborhoods they live in, and the harsh reality for many minorities in the United States as the inspiration for their portfolios. Their words and images shed light on aspects of American life that are often kept out of the news and sometimes thought of as problems that many believe don’t affect them directly. Trace and Aylen decided to confront these issues head-on, making powerful statements through their work.  Read More

Students at the Fort Wayne Museum of Art’s monthly Art Club series where students connect with their peers to talk inspirations, sketch prompts, and ways to be their best creative selves.

Students at the Fort Wayne Museum of Art’s monthly Art Club series where students connect with their peers to talk inspirations, sketch prompts, and ways to be their best creative selves.

The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards’ national office is dedicated to growing and supporting our local programs. Our Affiliates are doing great work in their communities, and we love hearing about their outreach efforts, their students, and their programs. This month, we shine the spotlight on the Northeast Indiana/Northwest Ohio Scholastic Art & Writing Regions, which are overseen by the Fort Wayne Museum of Art. Here’s what the staff at FWMoA had to say about Awards activity in their region:

The Northeast Indiana/Northwest Ohio Scholastic local program gains momentum each year. The FWMoA region is one of only 26 Scholastic Programs in the country to offer the full Art & Writing Program, giving more than 4,000 students in 52 counties the opportunity to compete in this prestigious program. Year after year, the students in our program go on to receive numerous National Medals–54 in 2015!
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