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FBCA Fine Arts & Writing Students Awarded with Eight Gold Keys and Six Silver Keys at HCDE Regional Scholastic Art & Writing Awards

Renie Deanda
On Wednesday, May 3, nine FBCA students were recognized by the Harris County Department of Education (HCDE) for their exemplary art at the Regional Scholastic Art & Writing Awards Ceremony in the Cullen Theater at the Wortham Center in Downtown Houston.

The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards is the nation’s longest-running prestigious recognition program for creative teens. FBCA students earned 25 Scholastic Awards, including eight Gold Keys, six Silver Keys, and ten Honorable Mention awards.

This year from this region, there were over 7,700 art submissions and over 5,200 writing submissions in the competition. Of those submissions, 425 were Gold Key awards and 575 were Silver Key awards. 
Senior Surrell Taylor was also awarded the Texas Art Supply Award, where he was one of five students to be selected for this award.  

Art Award Recipients

Texas Art Supply Award
Surrell Taylor - Sculpture True North 

Gold Key 
Alexa Gerke - D&I In the Shadows 
Alexa Gerke - Printmaking Duomo 
Thea Longbottom - Photography Explosion 
Julia Marrow - Sculpture Life by Life in Creation 
Julia Marrow - Sculpture Jubilee 
Mandy Sievers - Photography Lands End 
Mandy Sievers - Photography Maritime 
Surrell Taylor - Sculpture True North 

Silver Key 
Madison Carter - Ceramics & Glass The Weight of Glory 
Madison Carter - Ceramics & Glass Divine Glory 
Thea Longbottom - Photography Perception of Dominance 
Julia Marrow - Expanded Projects Altair
Keenum Self - Photography Nucleus 
Honorable Mention 
Madison Besecker - Mixed Media Windows and Doors 
Madison Besecker - Photography Red Sulfur 
Ava Kwan - Printmaking Juxtapostion of Two 
Jaelynn Lee - Photography Casting Back
Joana Liu - Painting The Arrival 
Thea Longbottom - Photography Moment of Silence 
Sara Sanchez - Mixed Media Crown 
Sara Sanchez - Drawing Woah There Partner 
Mandy Sievers -  Photography Horizon Line 
Mandy Sievers - Art Portfolio Grains of Sugar 

*Scholastic Art Award Educators: Director of Fine Arts Robert Sanders and Upper School Art Teacher Ryan Baptiste. 

Writing Award Recipients
Julia Yang - Silver Key  Wayward Daughter

*Scholastic Writing Award Educator: Upper School ELA Teacher Rob LaVohn.

Three of the above FBCA students, Surrell Taylor, Julia Marrow and Thea Longbottom, will be recognized by the National Scholastic Art & Writing Awards program this summer in New York City.  

“We are equally honored and grateful to be recognized by this prestigious program! It is an honor to be selected and to have the student's work showcased in this manner,” Robert Sanders, FBCA Director of Fine Arts, said. “As educators, we are so proud of our students and the outstanding achievements in the arts at this professional level. We are proud of our student's originality, technical skill, and emergence of their exceptional artistic and literary talent that they put into each piece they create. What a joyous and beautiful honor!”

HCDE annually sponsors the regional Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. School districts, private schools, and home schools are represented as students earning Gold Key, Silver Key, and Honorable Mention awards. Students submit their work through their teachers or school. Several hundred volunteer art and writing professionals judge the submissions.

All Scholastic Art and Writing competition entries are considered for multiple awards, with the Gold Key being the pinnacle. The awards are presented to students during celebration ceremonies and exhibitions in each region of the state.

Jurors look for work that exemplifies the Awards’ core values: originality, technical skill, and the emergence of a personal voice or vision. Entries are selected for awards without knowledge of the student’s gender, age, ethnicity, or hometown by some of the foremost visual and literary arts leaders.
The regional Gold Key entries are automatically considered for national awards in New York City, where world-renowned creative professionals will judge them.

The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards, founded in 1923, provide young artists and writers in grades 7-12 with the opportunity to showcase their art and writing talents.  The goal of these competitions is to bring outstanding visual art and writing created by teens to a national audience by showcasing the work and encouraging creative development.  Click here for the HCDE Regional Scholastic Art & Writing Awards to view a list of the winners.
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