J-DHS Dominates at 2015 Scholastic Art Awards

Olivia Byrnes and Emma Carr

Assistant Editors of Production

One after another after another, Jamesville-Dewitt High School students were called to the stage to accept their awards at the 2015 Scholastic Art Awards held Jan. 15 at Onondaga Community College. This award night showcased the artwork and photographs created by students throughout the Central New York area. J-DHS students earned countless Gold Key, Silver Key, and Honorable Mention awards, and a few students also won more prestigious awards from the Master Ceremony List such as Best Landscape, Best Syracuse Cultural Workers and Best Drawing.

Junior Emily Maar “was really surprised” that she won the award for Best Landscape, but was happy because “it’s really an honor.” Junior Rebecca Shen was “shocked” to win the Best Drawing Award, and two other Gold Key Awards for her other drawings. “It took a lot of determination and time,” said Shen about her piece. She said it was her decision to draw such intricate portraits of people with freckles or wrinkles that helped her win these awards. Senior Dalya Al Hoshishi won the Best Syracuse Cultural Workers Award for her drawing of her friend wearing a hijab with arabic writing in the background. “It was really hard to get all the details right, but I was happy that I won,” said Al Hoshishi.

In addition to the Master Ceremony Awards, J-DHS students won other awards including Gold Keys, Silver Keys, and Honorable Mentions for their drawings and paintings. Sophomore Sara Signorelli was one of the many students to win Gold Keys. “I started (the award-winning drawing of a horse) last year and was able to finish in time to submit it this year,” said Signorelli. The pointers her art teacher, Carlos Benedict, gave her everyday is what Signorelli believes helped her win the award. She said that Mr. Benedict helped her “stay motivated,” decide which colors to use, and where to shade. Maar, who also won a Gold Key for an oil painting, said she worked on her piece every day and even sometimes at home. “It was difficult to get it done on time, but winning a Gold Key made it worth my time,” she said. Mr. Benedict was very proud of all the students that won awards and was impressed that almost all of his students had come in after school to work on their pieces to finish them in time. “It was really amazing,” he said.

Not only did J-D students win awards for drawings and paintings, they also won numerous awards in photography. Senior Hunter Siegel-Cook won a Gold Key for his portfolio, which is multiple pictures with the same scenery. “I was really surprised when I won the portfolio award because it’s really hard to win, so I was happy,” he said. Siegel-Cook also won a Gold Key for digital art, which is when you edit photos and make the object seem in a different setting. Photography teacher Lisa Troubetaris helped her students edit, matte, and print the photographs, but she thinks “the students really did most of the work.” Sophomore Lizzie O’Brien won a silver key, and thinks that it was really helpful to have her teacher pick out her best pieces to submit. “I was surprised and ecstatic to find out that I had won a Silver Key,” said O’Brien.

J-D Students were awarded countless times for their photos and paintings at the 2015 Scholastic Art Awards. Teachers, Mr. Wenzel and Mrs. Troubetaris couldn’t be more proud of their students who entered pieces. 

Special Awards


Syracuse Cultural Workers

Dalya Al-Hoshishi – Drawing

“Portrait of Sarah El-Hindi”


Barrow Gallery (Best Landscape)

Emily Maar – Painting



Director’s Award (Best Drawing)

Rebecca Shen – Drawing



Fine Arts Portfolio Silver Key Awards

Laura Coli

Rebecca Fuller

Urmi Roy

Hunter Siegel

Julia Slisz


Fine Arts Portfolio Honorable Mention

Nick Kolceski

Macie Whitbeck



Gold Key Awards

Dalya Al-Hoshishi, Jack Davis     

 Sara El-Hindi, Emma Gibson

 Arianna Hege, Emily Maar

Mackenzie Maxam, Arielle Nagar

 Kate Norton, Paige Petrell

 Emily Pike, Elizabeth Redmore

Urmi Roy, Alisa Salbert    

Hayley Schultz, Emily Shapiro (2)  

Rebecca Shen (2), Sara Signorelli

Hunter Siegel, Katie Tzivanis

Shannon Theobald, Macie Whitbeck

Silver Key Awards

Dalya Al-Hoshishi, Lauren Bertram               

Zarina Bulatova, Cayla Dedrick (2)

Thomas Edson, Rebecca Fuller (2)

Elizabeth Glisson, Niki Jiang

Carolyn Kolceski, Maggie Mannion                        

Sarah Marron, Brianna McKnight

Ailis McVearry,  Arielle Nagar                

Lexi Nicotra, Lizzie O’Brien                       

Elizabeth Redmore, Rachel Redmore

Urmi Roy, Jillian Schmidt                     

Julia Slisz (3), Gabrielle Tanksley                

Madeline VanHusen Rebecca Wengert (2)


Honorable Mention Awards

Dalya Al-Hoshishi, Aygul Amurlayeva                   

Lauren Betram, Toria Carter                         

Samantha Coombs, Sarah El-Hindi

Rebecca Fuller (2), Alexandra Frank

Riley Jeanetta, Kelsey Kissane                     

Nick Kolceski (2), Joshua Kowalczyk

Hannah Leslie, Maggie Mannion                      

Aoife McCaul, Sarah Nevin                         

Lilliana Proe (2), Rachel Redmore (2)

Urmi Roy, Jillian Schmidt (3)

Kerry Simizon, Julia Slisz                             

Eileen Tan, Katie Tzivanis

Richard VanBenSchoten, Rebecca Wengert  

Macie Whitbeck, Alexander Williams

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