Student news, March 3, 2016

Student investigates art, makes discovery

Worcester, Mass. >> When Clark University junior Alexandra C. Gray, of West Hartford, set out to investigate a piece of artwork included in the “Cyanotypes: Photography’s Blue Period,” exhibit planned at the local art museum, she wound up getting a life lesson, not just a lesson about art.

Gray interviewed artist Annie Lopez about the formal and conceptual elements of Medical Conditions (2013)—a blue dress featured in the first major museum exhibit devoted to the technique that gives photographs a distinct blue tint—and discovered that the artist’s creation symbolized her anxiety about a loved one’s struggle with Alzheimer’s Disease.

Gray was struck by the artist’s bravery and transparency when it came to disclosing details about her piece and her personal and private struggle she experienced while creating it.

“Speaking with the artist allowed me to connect her raw emotions of fear and anxiety with my own experiences, allowing me to deeply analyze the piece,” Gray writes in a blog post on the Worcester Art Museum website. “Though Lopez acknowledges artmaking as a cathartic experience, it takes great courage to discuss internal and familial struggles with a large audience. I hope to gain Lopez’s openness and honesty in my own life and understand how to effectively speak my own truth.”

Gray and 10 other Clark University students enrolled in a seminar co-taught by Kristina Wilson, associate professor of art history, and Nancy Burns of the Worcester Art Museum, organized and prepared for the exhibit and provided deeply researched essays for the exhibition catalogue. The students visited galleries and museums and spoke with artists’ representatives and the artists themselves to reconstruct histories of the photographers and create labels describing some of the works in this 78-piece exhibit.

“The original impetus was to bring students into the museum and give them exposure to the level of work needed to research and put together an exhibition,” said Wilson. “This was an exciting project and a great example of Liberal Education and Effective Practice at work. The students worked incredibly hard and have so much to be very proud of.”

Gray is a 2013 graduate of Conard High School.

Hall students earn writing awards

WEST HARTFORD >> Four students from William H. Hall High School have garnered recognition in the 2016 Scholastic Art and Writing Awards, including seniors Madeleine Olson, Marina Tinone and Corona Zhang, and freshman Sarah Lewis. Founded in 1923, the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards are the nation’s longest-running, most prestigious educational initiative supporting student achievement in the visual and literary arts.

Sarah Lewis received a silver key for her short story titled “Snapshots.” Stand-out works submitted to local programs that demonstrate exceptional ability are awarded Silver Keys. Madeleine Olson received an honorable mention for her personal essay titled “One Day.” Accomplished works submitted to local programs showing great skill and/or potential earn Honorable Mention Awards.

Marina Tinone received a Gold Key for her personal essay titled “Lifeline,” as well as for her critical essay titled “Societal Gaff(e).” The very best works submitted to local programs are awarded Gold Keys; Gold Keys are automatically considered for national-level recognition. Marina also earned an honorable mention for her journalism piece titled “Everything is Awesome,” and for her poem titled “Immediacy and Intimacy.”

Corona Zhang earned a Gold Key for her personal essay titled “Curated Images,” and a Silver Key for her portfolio piece titled “Growing Up.” Corona also earned four honorable mentions: for her personal essays “Invitation,” “Can’t Stop Thinking About,” and “Dear Ma,” as well as for a poem titled “Growing Up.”

Resident wins in scholastic writing competition

HARTFORD >> Watkinson School, Hartford’s oldest coed independent day school for grades 6-PG, is proud to announce that junior Daniella Angulo of West Hartford won two Silver Keys for flash fiction stories and an honorable mention for a short story piece at the 2016 Scholastic Writing Competition.

Angulo’s pieces were titled In Memoriam, Bowled Over and Smoke. She says her writing is inspired by events and experiences she has that are particularly interesting. “I tend to remember singular events for the curiosity that they evoked in me in the moment,” Angulo explained, “Through my writing, I try to unpack their significance in different contexts.”

Local students win DMV contest

HARTFORD >> The eighth annual DMV -Travelers Teen Safe Driving Video Contest top-ranking winners were announced today with Weston High School earning overall first place and the multicultural award. (See list below) Students crafted videos with the theme, “When Shifting into Drive, Keep the Safety of Others in Mind!”

State officials, Travelers’ executives, students and other teen driving safety advocates from around the state met today in Hartford and endorsed the winning student-made videos in the 2016 DMV-Travelers Teen Safe Driving Video Contest for high school students.

Other winners: Second Place - William H. Hall High School in West Hartford; Third and Fourth Places - Daniel Hand High School in Madison; Fifth Place - Arts at the Capitol Theater in Willimantic.

Students named to President’s list, Dean’s list

EAST HARTFORD >> Goodwin College’s President’s List and dean’s list for the Fall 2015 Session includes a number of West Hartford students, all of whom scored a perfect 4.0 GPA: Madeline Howard, Amy Laplante, Crystal Paquette, Kelly Pham, Liliana Rodriguez, Tatiana Rodriguez and Leonard Williams.

Dean’s list: Maribel Bolivar, Brennan Brigante, Arturo Darzon-Abstengo, Madeline Howard, Amy Laplante, Latoya Lewis, Nina Mae Manganaan, Elizabeth Meunier, Azeezah Muhammad, Halley Norman, Crystal Paquette, Giulia Pascutto, Kelly Pham, Aura Placencia, Liliana Rodriguez, Tatiana Rodriguez, Leonard Williams, Dawn Wood, Renzo Yllescas and Rose Korncavage.

Students named to University of Hartford dean’s list

WEST HARTFORD >> The University of Hartford announced that the following West Hartford students have been named to the dean’s list for fall 2015.

Joel Agosto, David Dupre, Kylie Hoang, Genna McGowan, Randy Begin, Aiyana Callas, Anthony Davis, Adam Haggett, Burhan Nela, Richard Olano, Johnathan Cohen, Arieh Fried, Imellisse Gonzalez, James Hara, Dylan Healy, Lily Horn, Roohan Nistar, Hamza Salameh, Dallas Skau, Shawna Macsuga, Isabelle Barere, Reid Bassette, Cody Bigenho, Michael Jones, Matthew Thomsen, Tess Michaud, Inga Smith, Kyle White, Sam Wunder, Jonathan Englert, Lianne Miller, Thomas DuPuis, Elisa Schuder, Robert Sechtman, Mikayla Pascucci, Sana Trozic, Robert Marconi, Fernando Huapaya-Rios, Evans Williams, Benjamin Sheridan, Serena Phu, Cianna Costa.

Wells named to dean’s list

MADISON, NJ >> Cassidy Wells, of West Hartford, a student at Fairleigh Dickinson University’s Florham Campus, located in Madison, N.J. has been named to the dean’s list for the fall 2015 semester.