The nonprofit Alliance for Young Artists & Writers has announced the national winners of the 2016 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards, the country’s longest-running and most prestigious award and recognition program for creative teens in grade 7–12. The Northern New Jersey region had 49 students awarded national medals from a panel of distinguished judges. The students all submitted their work to the competition through the Montclair Art Museum.
The Montclair Art Museum is the sole affiliate sponsor of the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards in New Jersey, the ninth year MAM has served in this capacity. The Museum administers the regional awards annually in February and recipients of the highest level of regional award, Gold Key, move on to the national competition. Within the Awards’ 29 categories, which include poetry, photography, sculpture, humor, editorial cartoons, and video game design, a record-breaking 330,000 works of art and writing were submitted for adjudication at the regional level this year. Works are judged on originality, technical skill, and the emergence of personal vision or voice.
Awards in the Portfolio category are given to a selection of up to eight works by seniors that are judged as a unit; other awards are issued by individual artwork and students can earn more than one award.
The 49 northern NJ students received 55 national awards total. The recipients are listed below by Name, Town, Grade, and School:
Portfolio Silver Medal with Distinction (1)
Avital Shtapura, Fair Lawn, 12, Fair Lawn High School
Gold Medal (16)
Maya Bagish, New Providence, 11, New Providence High School
Matthew Cerha, Hamilton, 9, Home School
Kathleen Gao, Millburn, 12, Millburn Senior High School
Lauren Kim, Oradell, 7, Our Lady of Mount Carmel
Jessica Lin, Yardley, 8, Princeton Day School (Two Gold Medals)
Micah Maben, Maplewood, 12, Columbia High School
Baiyi Ning, Belle Mead, 12, Hun School of Princeton
Patricia Patalinjug, Nutley, 10, Nutley High School (Also Herb Block Award for Editorial Cartoon)
Jacob Schuster, Old Tappan, 12, Northern Valley Regional High School Old Tappan
Ashley Sun, Warren, 11, Newark Academy
Cassie Tammy Wang, Princeton Junction, 7, Home School
Raymond Tang, Warren, 12, Watchung Hills Regional High School (Also New York Life Scholarship)
Grace Yan, Belle Mead, 9, Montgomery High School
Licheng Yang, New Providence, 12, New Providence High School
Cynthia Zhang, Holmdel, 8, William R Satz Intermediate School
Silver Medal (34)
Sarah Abrahamsen, Hackensack, 12, Northern Highlands Regional High School
Luc-Paul Adams, Jersey City, 12, Henry Snyder High School
Turner Andrasz, Maplewood, 11, Columbia High School
Mageto Angwenyi, Jersey City, 11, Infinity Institute
Kayleen Minseo Bae, Northvale, 9, Northern Valley Regional High School Old Tappan
Edward Cai, Watchung, 11, Watchung Hills Regional High School
Suyeon Chang, Flanders, 11, Mt. Olive High School
Emily Choi, Ridgewood, 10, Ridgewood High School
Garrett Chow, Montclair, 10, Montclair High School
Isabel Drumwright, Plainsboro, 11, West Windsor-Plainsboro High School North
Erica Einhorn, Millburn 12, Millburn Senior High School
Kate Evans, Ridgewood, 11, Dwight-Englewood School
Margeaux Gould, Weehawke, 11, Academy of the Holy Angels
Yuri Han, Tenafly, 11, Tenafly High School
Eric Jiang, Hillsborough, 12, Hillsborough High School
Dahyeon Kim, Little Ferry, 12, Ridgefield Park Senior High School
Misa Kim, Blairstown, 12, Home School
Nathan Kim, Allendale, 12, Northern Highlands Regional High School
Chris Klein, Skillman, 10, Princeton Day School
Na Young Lee, Norwood, 12, Academy of the Holy Angels
Sarah Lee, Demarest, 12, Home School
Seoyeon Lee, Norwood, 10, Northern Valley Regional High School Old Tappan
Brandon Li, Skillman, 10, Home School
Dan Li, Closter, 12, Northern valley Regional High School Demarest
Nick Metz, Hillsdale, 12, Pascack Valley High School
Shana Mimnaugh, Princeton, 12, Princeton Day School
Katherine Mu, East Brunswick, 8, Home School
Christine Na, Cresskill, 12, Cresskill High School
Abby Ow, Short Hills, 12, Millburn Senior High School
Alison Palmeri, Franklin Lakes, 12, Oak Knoll School – Holy Child
Ashley Sun, Warren, 11, Newark Academy
Harper Usiskin, Hopewell, 9, Pennington School
Judy Xie, Boonton, 9, Mountain Lakes High School
Sung Won Yoon, Tenafly, 12, Tenafly High School (also the American Visions Medal)
2017 Special Scholarships and Awards, NJ Winners (4):
- The New York Life Foundation Award provides six $1,000 scholarships to students whose work exemplifies how the arts can act as a positive outlet to cope with loss and
death, and whose work raises public awareness of the issue of youth bereavement. This year’s recipients included Raymond Tang, Warren, New Jersey.
- The second-annual Editorial Cartoon category, sponsored by The Herb Block Foundation, celebrates the legacy of four-time Pulitzer Prize–winning political cartoonist Herb Block and his remarkable contribution to American history and free expression. The three teen artists who received The Herb Block Award for Editorial Cartoon, a $1,000 scholarship for their outstanding drawings, illustrations, or animations offering commentary on current events or political topics, included Patricia Patalinjug, Nutley, New Jersey.
- The Gedenk Award for Tolerance provides six $1,000 scholarships to work that addresses the Gedenk Movement’s mission, reflecting on lessons learned from the Holocaust and other genocides, and increasing tolerance in the world. This year’s recipients included Suzan Kim, Hackensack, New Jersey.
- Five works are nominated out of all regional Gold Key works across all categories as the “Best in Show” for each region; the national jurors chose the best of the five for the American Visions Medal. This year’s NJ American Visions Medal went to Sung Won Yoon, Tenafly, New Jersey.
The winners will be celebrated at two events in New York City in June:
- June 8: National Ceremony at Carnegie Hall: The Gold Portfolio, Gold Medal, and Silver Medal with Distinction students across the nation will be honored at Carnegie Hall with appearances by notable celebrities and creative leaders.
- June 2-12: Art.Write.Now.2017 National Exhibition: More than 1,000 of the top Scholastic Art & Writing Awards visual and literary works will be on display for the public at the Sheila C. Johnson Design Center at Parsons School of Design at The New School and Pratt Institute’s Pratt Manhattan Gallery in New York City.
“Our wonder and amazement at the creative output of our country’s youth —and the dedication of our extraordinary educators—never ceases, and this year is no exception,” said Virginia McEnerney, Executive Director of the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers, the nonprofit organization that presents the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. “The young people being recognized today for the 2017 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards are to be celebrated for their creative and critical thinking, their bravery in telling their own stories on their own terms, and their inventiveness in recording and recreating their worlds. Watch closely, because among this 2,500 are members of the next generation of great American artists and writers.”
“The body of work submitted this year demonstrated the outstanding artistic talent in New Jersey,” said Leah Fox, Director of the Vance Wall Art Education Center at MAM. “The Montclair Art Museum is thrilled to once again host the Scholastic Art Award competition as part of the range of programs for teens it offers to enrich their knowledge and practice of arts and culture.”