SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – A districtwide art and writing contest was launched to provide students with the opportunity to express their views on The Portrait of a Graduate. Springfield Public Schools announced the winners of the contest on Friday.

“I should not be surprised by the caliber of the entries that were submitted for this contest,” said Superintendent of Schools Daniel Warwick. “But as usual, when given a chance to shine, our students rose the occasion, meeting if not surpassing expectation. Their submissions were thoughtful, insightful and creative.”

Winners of the art contest include the following:

  • Adrianna Arce
  • Jacionna Bolden
  • Keylani Lopez
  • Salima Jackobo
  • Nalanys Martinez
  • Jayla Merced
  • Qamar Adan Mohamed
  • Angelo Rodriguez
  • Carielys Sanchez
  • Isabel Santiago
  • Xavier Villanueva
  • Amouri

Winners of the written contest include the following:

  • Lauren Carrasquillo
  • Xyomara Hernandez
  • Zoe Holland
  • Samira Padilla
  • Julio Vargas
  • Dario Wilson
  • Michael Wilson

Among the judges for the contests were Julie Jaron, director of visual and performing arts; and Brian Dickey, director of secondary English Language Arts and Libraries. After announcing the winners last year and delivering their prize packages in person, Jaron and Dickey personally visited the winning students’ schools.

“I am especially proud of our students for their efforts in producing artwork that represents the pillars in the Portrait of a Graduate,” said Jaron.  The artwork highlights the persistence required to take an abstract idea, learn about, and develop that idea using the creative process, and as an outcome, lead others to recognize the value of the attribute they chose as the subject in their artwork.”

“The Portrait Writing Contest has been a great highlight this past year. Our students created writing that was insightful, energizing, and transformative,” said Dickey. “Travelling to each school to present the awards to the awe-struck, beaming faces of the winners, was a truly joyous moment in my career.”

The district has been working with the community for more than three years to develop the Portrait of a Graduate. In the creation of The Portrait of a Graduate, more than 2,000 community members, educators, and students participated.

To view photos of the contest winners click here.