NORFOLK — The artistic talents of three Norwood-Norfolk Central School students have been recognized nationally.
Aiden Donnelly, a junior, was named a National Gold Medalist for a piece called “Segment” during the recent National Scholastic Art Competition.
“It was our first Gold winner in Norwood-Norfolk history. We had three Silver Medals last year,” art teacher Jason Hubbard said.
In addition, Erin Dickinson and Erin Stickney were recognized as National Silver Medalists for their pieces, “Undercurrents” and “Evergreen,” respectively.
Mr. Hubbard said the winners represent the top 1% in the nation.
“I called each of them up and talked with them on the phone a lit bit,” he said.
He said Ms. Dickinson and Ms. Stickney were excited about the news that they were silver medalists.
“They’re seniors, so they definitely understand how big it is to get a medal at the nationals,” Mr. Hubbard said.
He said Mr. Donnelly “was blown away by it. He was definitely very excited.”
To reach the nationals, students had to place well in the regional competition, where judges review more than 5,000 pieces of art from about 200 teachers and between 80 to 100 schools. The Central New York region covers 13 counties and nearly 400 eligible schools from Rochester to Massena.
Gold Keys represent the best works submitted to local programs and are automatically considered for national-level recognition.
“We had 22 Gold Keys that moved on to the nationals. From there, you’re talking the top 1 percent in the nation,” Mr. Hubbard said.
Superintendent James Cruikshank said: “We’ve really had a surge in our fine arts department here at Norwood-Norfolk. The bar has been raised by the teachers and the expectations have been met. Our teachers have been providing wonderful opportunities for them not to just expand their skills, but to showcase their skill set. Our students have truly been excelling in what they do.”
“It’s so impressive what these kids have been doing,” he said. “We are beyond proud of our students and their accomplishments. ... We hold our expectations high and our kids are meeting and exceeding those expectations. It’s very affirming and confirming not just for the kids, but for the teachers.”