Scholastic Art & Writing Awards

The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards Announces its 100th Class of National Medalists!

Maxine Osa  //  Mar 23, 2023

The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards Announces its 100th Class of National Medalists!

Yesterday we announced the 100th annual class of national medalists in this year’s 2023 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards, including the 16 recipients of the Award’s highest honor—the Gold Medal Portfolio Award. Additionally, writer Joyce Carol Oates and fashion designer Tracy Reese were named this year’s 2023 Alumni Achievement Award recipients.

Its official! The Alliance for Young Artists & Writers has announced the 100th class of National Medalists for this year’s Scholastic Art & Writing Awards—the nation’s longest-running and most prestigious recognition program for creative student artists and writers in grades 7–12.

This year, student involvement is up by 15% from 2022, with more than 100,000 teens from U.S. territories, Canada, and every state in the nation participating in this year’s Awards. Over 300,000 works of art and writing were entered into the Awards for adjudication. Students had the opportunity to enter any of the Awards’ 28 categories—including painting, novel writing, mixed media, poetry, digital art, and journalism—as well as a variety of sponsored award scholarships.

Among the more than 7,000 portfolios that were entered for adjudication at the national level of the Awards program, 16 high school seniors’ portfolios earned the program’s highest honor, the Gold Medal Portfolio Award, which includes a $12,500 scholarship, an increase for the centennial from $10,000 in previous years!

This year’s 2023 Gold Medal Portfolio Award Recipients are:  

Gold Portfolios Art:

  • Marceline Castrillon, Arlington, VA
  • Maya Dabney, Huntersville, NC
  • Siann Han, Teterboro, NJ
  • Joanne Hong, North Hollywood, CA
  • Sooah Lee, La Crescenta, CA
  • Jeffrey Wang, Coppell, TX
  • Cherish Williams, New York, NY
  • Bayan Yunis, Fort Wayne, IN

Gold Portfolios Writing:

  • Taiwo Adebowale, Towson, MD
  • Sophia Fratta, Chapel Hill, NC
  • Maggie Hoppel, Noblesville, IN
  • Shnayjaah Jeanty, Pembroke Pines, FL
  • Elizabeth Keller, Interlochen, MI
  • Sarah Fathima Mohammed, San Jose, CA
  • Nora Sun, Chicago, IL
  • Zoe Yu, The Woodlands, TX

As part of the Awards’ 100th anniversary, the Alliance has recognized writer Joyce Carol Oates and fashion designer Tracy Reese as this year’s Alumni Achievement Award recipients. This annual accolade is given to esteemed alumni whose innovative careers have influenced their industries and who credit their Scholastic Art & Writing Award as a pivotal moment in their teenage years, providing confidence and encouragement to explore their creative pursuits.

“A Scholastic Writing Award in 1956, in my senior year of high school at Williamsville High, was the very first award of any kind I’d received in my life—it was totally, wonderfully, memorably a great surprise, inestimably encouraging. I had been writing for years—mostly for myself—and this award helped to confirm that I could be a ‘writer’ of the kind I so admired. I see now with much pleasure that Scholastic Writing Awards have expanded their program in a most generous, ambitious way, providing financial assistance for countless young writers. I could not have foreseen that I would indeed become a ‘writer’—but looking back now, I am so grateful to the judges who perused my short story and saw merit in it. Thank you!” – Joyce Carol Oates

“I am extremely honored to be chosen to receive the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards’ Alumni Achievement Award in the 100th anniversary of this prestigious program! When I received the National award in 1981 it was a wonderful and meaningful validation of my choice to pursue a career in an artistic field. I hope this year’s student recipients go on to embark upon careers as rich and fulfilling as mine has been thus far. Thank you to everyone at the Alliance for choosing to honor me both in 1981 and today.” – Tracy Reese

To help celebrate the Awards’ 100th national announcement, Tracy appeared on the TODAY show yesterday to talk about her experience earning an Award and more! Check it out below:  

Congratulations to Joyce, Tracy, the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards’ 2023 Gold Medal Portfolio recipients, and all the national Award-winning students!

Please stay tuned in the coming weeks as we’ll be featuring a brand-new and exclusive series dedicated to Scholastic Art & Writing Award-Winning alumni right here on the blog!

Find out more about this year’s Awards on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and LinkedIn. And don’t forget to tag on social media using @ArtAndWriting #GoldKey!

Cover photo: Courtesy of the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers and 1979 alumnus John Currin.