Sophia Pineiro-Widejko - Presented with Silver Key Award by Montclair Art Museum

ELIZABETH, NJ - Thomas Jefferson Arts Academy junior Sophia Pineiro-Widejko was selected to receive the Silver Key recognition for the 2019 Scholastic Art and Writing Awards.

The Scholastic Art and Writing Awards are presented by the Alliance for Young Artists and Writers. The Alliance is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization whose mission is to identify students with exceptional artistic and literary talent and present their remarkable work to the world through the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards.

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The awards program provides students recognition, exhibition, publication, and scholarship opportunities. Students throughout the United States submitted nearly 350,000 original works in 29 different categories of art and writing for the award competition.

Pineiro-Widejko’s “Have We Forgotten,” received the Silver Key award in mixed media. Her award-winning art piece was recently exhibited in Summit at the Visual Arts Center of New Jersey, a dedicated partner of Jefferson Arts Academy and Elizabeth Public Schools.

The Montclair Art Museum (MAM), presented her with the Silver Key award and has served as the sole affiliate sponsor of the Scholastic Art Awards in the Northern New Jersey Art Region since 2009.

MAM partners with the Alliance for Young Artists and Writers to identify and recognize outstanding teenage artists in Bergen, Essex, Passaic, Hudson, Morris, Sussex, Union, and Warren counties.

Pineiro-Widejko’s talents extend beyond the visual arts, having also completed extensive study in piano and musical composition. In tandem with her creative accomplishments, she is currently ranked third in her class and is a member of the National Honor Society and the school’s Destination Imagination Team.

She recently attended Middlesex County College to take her first college courses during the break between her sophomore and junior years and looks forward to taking further dual enrollment courses through Elizabeth Public Schools’ partnership with Fairleigh Dickinson University.

The Jefferson Arts Academy’s award-winning artist was honored along with the other Silver Key and Honorable Mention awards recipients at the Northern New Jersey Region Awards ceremony on February 28, at the Montclair Art Museum.

“The unique and inspiring talents of students at Thomas Jefferson Arts Academy continue to shine brightly in artistic competition,” stated Elizabeth Public Schools Superintendent Olga Hugelmeyer.

“Sofia is a very artistically gifted young lady who clearly is passionate and dedicated to achieving excellence not only in the arts but academically. Jefferson Arts Academy has been recognized as a Model School in the Arts and it is students like Sofia whose creativity and ability show us why.”

“We are proud of Sofia for receiving such an amazing honor and to be competing admirably among students throughout New Jersey and the country,” said Elizabeth Board of Education President Stephanie Goncalves. “I look forward to seeing more of her artistic work and creativity in the years to come.” is Elizabeth’s free daily news source. Sign up for our daily eNews and follow us on Facebook at and Twitter @TAPElizabeth. 

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