Art Students’ National Awards Submissions Go Virtual


Kyle Brennan

Pieces of art by AP Art students, such as those by seniors Mekhi Chambers, left, and Elyza Bruce, could earn awards through virtual competitions this year.

Ally Roche, Arts/Entertainment Reporter

WOODBURY — Art students submit their artwork every year for different awards through different organizations. This year, the awards have changed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This has taken a toll on the process for the students and the experience.

Nonnewaug art students have previously submitted their work to different organizations, including the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards and the National Art Honor Society Juried Exhibit in Alexandria, Virginia.

Elyza Bruce, a senior at Nonnewaug, explained that the biggest change in this year’s contest is that winners won’t have an actual ceremony to attend.

“[Pieces of artwork] are just submitted online,” Bruce said. “If their piece is chosen, though, it will probably be physically sent to the gallery. The awards are working pretty much the same as they always have, except we won’t be able to attend physical awards ceremonies, unfortunately.”

The Scholastic Art and Writing Awards were created in 1923 and since have spread inspiration through teens across the country. For these awards there are multiple categories for the students to submit a variety of different art pieces, including painting, printmaking, fashion, sculpture, and more. Each category follows different instructions for what is allowed to be submitted, including size and what is accepted in each category.

The National Art Honor Society Juried Exhibit contest is available only to students who are members of NAHS or NJAHS who are currently enrolled in school. This contest showcases the artwork of members of students involved in the NAHS or NJAHS. This year, however, the exhibit will be held online because of the coronavirus. 

Bruce, who was a winner in the NAHS contest last year, noted that there are plenty of prizes at stake.

“For scholastics, a student can win honorable mention, silver key, or gold key,” Bruce said. “For the national awards, a student can win a silver medal or gold medal. If a senior wins a gold portfolio, they receive a $25,000 scholarship.”

These awards give students a chance to receive scholarships to further their art careers in the college of their choice. The awards could also look good on a student’s resume.

Nonnewaug students can reach out to Leeza Desjardins, an art teacher, at [email protected]. To view the students’ artwork visit the NAHS Instagram page: