There are a lot of important and exciting dates in the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards calendar. September 16, 2013 was a big day for us as the 2014 Awards opened for submissions and we watched the first ones come in. Today, the 2014 National Medalists were officially announced!

The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards are the nation’s longest-running and most prestigious award and recognition program for creative teens. In addition to more than 1,800 of the most talented and ambitious students in grades 7-12 chosen to receive National Medals, 16 high school seniors were honored with a Gold Medal Portfolio Award. The Gold Medal Portfolio Award is the highest level of achievement in the Scholastic Awards — which, apart from providing much-deserved recognition to these talented teens, also provides them with a $10,000 cash scholarship! Read More

Makers and Breakers Banner

Maker (n) – someone who creates art and writing; transforms old forms into new ones
Breaker (n) – someone who conveys a message; is rhythmic; takes something apart

We are excited to launch the 2014 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards with a very special call to action. We believe that the world needs both makers and breakers—those committed to expressing themselves creatively, who push the boundaries of expression, and challenge the rest of us to do the same.

We know you’ve got something on your mind. Maybe it’s a new mixed media piece you’ve been working on or a fresh idea on how to integrate art and design by building clay sets. Perhaps, you’ve just completed your first collection of poetry or a work that mixes disciplines. The Awards has 28 categories buzzing with possibility.

So show us what you’ve got! Learn more about our submission guidelines here and register on September 16! Deadlines vary by region.

While most of us are preparing for the end of the year, students nationwide are racing to meet Scholastic Art & Writing Awards’ deadlines, submitting hundreds of thousands of original art and writing. At our peak, the Awards will receive over 6,000 entries a day.

The Awards has grown since it began in 1923, but the criteria remain the same – originality, technical skill, and the emergence of a personal voice. Together, through schools across the country, we  have inspired millions of teens to create. Over our 90 year history, the Awards have become the nation’s highest honor for creative teens. Today,  winners earn over $8 million in scholarships annually.

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Rachel Brosnahan and Bernadette Peters in Coming Up Roses.
(Source: )

Here at the Alliance, we come across many creative and talented individuals. From the incredible young artists and writers that participate in the Scholastic Awards each year to the brilliant teachers and jurors that work with us, our staff is constantly inspired by people like you.

But, did you know that many of our staff members are also artists and writers?

Our Web & IT Director, Dominic Matar, recently surprised us with some awesome news – he wrote the soundtrack to Coming Up Roses, a film starring Bernadette Peters that’s currently playing in theaters! Check out the trailer below:

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Primary Role: As Manager of National Programs, Rebecca is responsible for many aspects of the national Scholastic Art & Writing Awards program, including student and teacher customer service, writing adjudication, student and teacher notification, and national events. Rebecca also manages the National Student Poets Program (NSPP), a partnership between the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers, the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities, and the Institute of Museum and Library Services honoring youth poets whose original work exhibits exceptional creativity, promise, and dedication to the craft.

Secret Fact: Rebecca grew up in London, England where she lived with her family until she was 14.

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From L to R: Kat Hendrix, Director of National Programs & Partnerships and Virginia McEnerney, Executive Director

Guest post from the Alliance’s Executive Director Virginia McEnerney

Yes, it’s true: Kat and I were invited to a holiday party at the White House! Because we’ve been working with so many awesome Washington-based organizations on the National Student Poets Program, we’ve made some good friends in our nation’s capital, and one of them arranged for us to get this invitation.

We headed to the White House on the evening of Dec. 2. After passing through a few security checkpoints we entered the famous building. Everybody who works at the White House is very gracious and warm, so we were welcomed and guided up the stairs to the Central Hall where the U.S. Marine Band was playing. Read More