Academy students score national Scholastic Award honors

23 Interlochen Arts Academy students from three majors have received national recognition in the 2019 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards.

Interlochen students from the Creative Writing, Visual Arts, and Music divisions received a total of 34 awards, including 14 Gold Medals and 20 Silver Medals. National honorees were selected from the collective pool of regional gold medalists that were announced earlier this year.

Creative writer Athena Nassar was just one of 16 graduating seniors awarded the program’s highest honor—the Gold Medal Portfolio—earning her a $10,000 scholarship for her submission, “Metamorphosis.” Entrants in the category submit a series of eight works that communicate a singular cohesive idea, and are judged blindly by a panel of industry experts who select the awards recipients. Sophie Paquette was awarded a Silver Medal with Distinction for her Writing Portfolio “Phantom Limb.”

Seniors Fiona Stanton and Gabriela Romero-Johnson won American Voices and American Visions Award respectively. The American Voices and American Visions Awards are given to one writer and one visual artist from each region. With both Stanton and Romero-Johnson winning awards, Interlochen received both the American Voices and American Visions Awards for the region. Romero-Johnson received the visual arts award for her comic art, “Breath.” Stanton received the writing award for her flash fiction work, “Circus People 1926.”

Visual artist Zhijin Hu’s mixed media piece “Metropolitan: Are we Satisfied of What We Have?” won a Gold Medal and a Best-in-Grade Award. The Best-of-Grade Award recognizes two visual artists and two writers per grade (7-12) with a $500 scholarship.

With 20 total national awards, Interlochen Arts Academy’s Visual Arts Department is the most-recognized program of any one school in the 2019 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards.

National medalists will be recognized at a national ceremony at Carnegie Hall in New York on June 6, and selected works will be exhibited in the Art.Write.Now exhibition that runs from May 31 to June 8.

The Scholastic Art and Writing Awards were founded in 1923 to recognize the vision, ingenuity, and talent of America’s youth. The awards are presented by the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers, a nonprofit organization that seeks to identify talented artists and writers and share their works with the world. The 29 award categories are open to students in grades 7-12 from public, private, or home schools across the United States.

2019 Interlochen Arts Academy recipients:

 Darius Atefat-Peckham – Silver Medal - Poetry
 Bryn Battani – Silver Medal - Poetry
 Yuqi Bian – Silver Medal - Drawing & Illustration
 Selim Choi – Silver Medal - Drawing & Illustration
 Lane Devers – Gold Medal - Personal Essay & Memoir
 Yimei Du – Gold Medal - Mixed Media
 Cookie Dutch – Silver Medal - Personal Essay & Memoir
 Gabrielle Freeman – Silver Medal - Short Story
 Sarah Howe – Gold Medal - Drawing & Illustration
 Zhijin Hu – Gold Medal, Best-in-Grade Award - Mixed Media | Silver Medal - Mixed Media
 Bianca Layog – Gold Medal - Flash Fiction | Gold Medal - Personal Essay & Memoir
 Kathrynne L'Esperance-Stokes – Silver Medal - Flash Fiction
 Yixiang Luo – Silver Medal - Painting
 Fiona Maisel – Silver Medal - Mixed Media
 Athena Nassar – Silver Medal - Poetry | Gold Medal - Writing Portfolio
 Sophie Paquette – Silver Medal with Distinction - Writing Portfolio
 Javi Peterson – Silver Medal - Ceramics & Glass | Gold Medal - Ceramics & Glass | Gold Medal - Ceramics & Glass | Silver Medal - Art Portfolio
 Pedro Resendez – Silver Medal - Mixed Media
 Gabriela Romero-Johnson – Gold Medal, American Visions Medal - Comic Art | Silver Medal - Comic Art
 Anqi Skok – Gold Medal - Mixed Media
 Fiona Stanton – Gold Medal, American Voices Medal - Short Story | Gold Medal - Flash Fiction
 Yvanna Vien Tica – Silver Medal - Flash Fiction | Silver Medal - Poetry | Silver Medal - Novel Writing
 Xueer Wang – Silver Medal - Sculpture
 Kaitung Yeung – Gold Medal - Fashion