Scholastic Art and Writing Awards gains North Dakota affiliate to recognize state’s creative teens

North Dakota teens with talents in the visual and literary arts have a new advantage in the 2015 Scholastic Art and Writing Awards, now in its 92nd year. For the first time in the history of the contest, North Dakota entries will be judged on a state basis rather than in a multi-state regional competition.

callartistThe newly formed North Dakota affiliate of the Alliance for Young Artists and Writers is a partnership between the Red River Valley Writing Project at North Dakota State University and Plains Art Museum, both based in Fargo.

“This allows us to have in-state judging and a state awards ceremony for North Dakota teens who participate,” said Kelly Sassi, director of the Red River Valley Writing Project and associate professor of English and education at NDSU. “There were only about 20 entries from the entire state of North Dakota for these awards last year. With $10 million in scholarship awards available at the national level, we feel strongly that more North Dakota students should have the opportunity to compete for these awards.”

The 2015 deadline for submissions is Dec. 17, 2014. Details of the art and writing categories, and entry and submission requirements, are available at Questions about the North Dakota judging may be directed to Olivia Edwardson, state coordinator, at

A ceremony to recognize all North Dakota winners, as well as an exhibition of visual art winners, will be held at Plains Art Museum on Feb. 17, 2015. Gold-level winners by state will move on to the national competition.

The Scholastic Art and Writing Awards were started in 1923 by Scholastic founder Maurice Robinson. They are the nation’s highest honor and largest source of scholarships for creative teenagers.

In partnership with more than 100 local affiliate organizations, the 2014 Scholastic Awards received 255,000 submissions across 28 art and writing categories. Notable Scholastic Awards alumni include Andy Warhol, Truman Capote, Joyce Carol Oates, Ken Burns, Sylvia Plath, Robert Redford, Stephen King, Lena Dunham and many more.