ELIZABETH, NJ - Thomas Jefferson Arts Academy senior Sofia Pineiro-Widejko received honorable mention recognition for the 2020 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. 

The awards program provides students with 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.

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Pineiro-Widejko received Honorable Mention for her piece, “I’m Just a Number,” which reflects the struggles of students making sense of the numbers that impact their futures—GPA, SAT score, class rank—and how they relate to their life aspirations.

In 2019, Pineiro-Widejko’s “Have We Forgotten,” received the Silver Key award in the Scholastic Arts competition. Her award-winning art piece was 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), who will present her with the honorable mention award, has served as the affiliate sponsor of the Scholastic Art Awards in the Northern New Jersey Art Region since 2009. The competition at MAM focuses on visual art for the counties of Bergen, Essex, Passaic, Hudson, Morris, Sussex, Union, and Warren.

Pineiro-Widejko’s has spread her artistic talents to both the visual and performing arts as she has also completed extensive study in piano and musical composition. She is currently a member of the National Honor Society and Jefferson Arts Academy’s Destination Imagination Team and looks forward to pursuing a career in the visual arts after graduating as a member of the Class of 2020 in June.

Jefferson Arts Academy’s award-winning artist will be honored along with Gold Key, Silver Key, and other Honorable Mention awards recipients at the Northern New Jersey Region awards ceremony and reception on February 27 at the MAM. Her piece will be on exhibit in the Vance Wall Art Education Center of the MAM from February 15 through March 22. The gallery hours are Wednesday through Sunday, 12-5 p.m.

“For the second year in a row, Sofia has demonstrated her exceptional talent in the arts and has proven herself to be one of the most gifted young artists in the Northern New Jersey Art Region,” stated Elizabeth Public Schools Superintendent Olga Hugelmeyer. “Her potential is as boundless as the creativity and imagination that inspire her captivating art pieces.”

“Receiving a single Scholastic Arts Award when competing among students from several counties is already exceptional, but to do it two straight years?” said Elizabeth Board of Education President Diane Barbosa. “Sofia has been a great representative of her school community, setting a standard of excellence while bringing attention to the tremendous talent that resides at Thomas Jefferson Arts Academy. She is an extraordinary artist who has a very promising future ahead of her.”

For further information on Elizabeth Public Schools, please visit www.epsnj.org

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