Student Artists Honored Nationally for Letting Their Imaginations Fly in 2015-2016 Reflections Program

Students to be recognized at 2016 National PTA Convention & Expo in Orlando, Fla.

ALEXANDRIA, Va., (May 11, 2016) — National PTA is pleased to announce the winners of its 2015-2016 Reflections® arts in education program. Seven students from across the country have been honored with the Outstanding Interpretation Award, and nearly 200 students have been recognized with Awards of Excellence and Merit. The awards honor creative interpretations of the theme “Let Your Imagination Fly” in the areas of dance choreography, film production, literature, music composition, photography and visual arts.

“Participation in the arts inspires creativity and self-expression while building children’s confidence and sense of accomplishment. Involvement in the arts is also closely associated with students’ academic achievement, social and emotional development and civic engagement,” said Laura Bay, president of National PTA. “We applaud all of the students who participated in the 2015-2016 Reflections program, and we are thrilled to recognize the award winners for their talent and artistic ingenuity.”

During the 2015-2016 school year, nearly 300,000 students from more than 8,000 schools nationwide and in U.S. schools overseas submitted original works to be considered for PTA’s highest honors in the arts. Outstanding Interpretation Award recipients will receive an $800 scholarship to further their artistic talents. An additional $200 will be awarded to each Outstanding Interpretation Award recipient’s local PTA to support arts and cultural exploration in their community. Award of Excellence recipients will receive a $200 scholarship. All award recipients receive a medallion and certificate.

The following students have been recognized with the Outstanding Interpretation Award:

Micah Diana Williams
Old Town Elementary School, Round Rock, Texas
Special Artist: “No Limits With Imagination”

Effie Tutko
Sammamish High School, Bellevue, Wash.
Dance Choreography: “Everybody Rules Their World”

McKyna Woerner
Corner Canyon High School, Draper, Utah
Film Production: “Kou’s Crane”

Christian Foggie
Oakview Elementary School, Fountain Inn, S.C.
Literature: “Dan’s Adventure”

Camilo Gonzalez-Sol
Richard Montgomery High School, Takoma Park, Md.
Music Composition: “Study in Magenta: Songs for a Sunday Dream”

Roshan Muthugomu
Chamblee Middle School, Chamblee, Ga.
Photography: “Unleashing the Creative Side”

Mackenzie Smith
duPont Manual High School, Louisville, Ky.
Visual Arts: “When an Artist Imagines”

These students will present their works on stage at the 2016 National PTA Convention & Expo, Saturday, July 2 during an awards celebration. In addition to being recognized at the 2016 National PTA Convention & Expo, the 2015-2016 Reflections award recipients will also be honored in a ceremony on Jan. 10, 2017 at the U.S. Department of Education’s LBJ Building in Washington, D.C. The ceremony will open an exhibit of their artwork, which will be displayed in the building through the end of February 2017.

Each year, the National PTA Reflections program encourages students of all ages to explore and be involved in the arts in an educational way. Through the program, National PTA and PTAs across the country urge students in preschool through grade 12 to create and submit original works of art in the medium of their choice—dance choreography, film production, literature, music composition, photography or visual arts—that reflect on the annual theme. There also is a special artist division to provide all students the opportunity to participate in the program. Submissions are reviewed by visual, literary and performing art experts, and students are recognized for their artistic ingenuity in bringing the theme to life.

“The National PTA Reflections program has inspired millions of students to explore their talents and be involved in the arts for nearly 50 years,” added Nathan R. Monell, CAE, National PTA executive director. “National PTA remains committed to ensuring all students have the opportunity to experience the arts, as it is essential to helping them reach their full potential and preparing them for long-term success.”

About National PTA

National PTA® comprises millions of families, students, teachers, administrators, and business and community leaders devoted to the educational success of children and the promotion of family engagement in schools. PTA is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit association that prides itself on being a powerful voice for all children, a relevant resource for families and communities, and a strong advocate for public education. Membership in PTA is open to anyone who wants to be involved and make a difference for the education, health, and welfare of children and youth.