Scholastic Art & Writing Awards - Alliance for Young Artists & Writers


Portfolio Scholarships

About This Scholarship

The Portfolio Awards, made possible by generous individual donors and other supporters, offer $12,500 scholarships to Gold Medal Portfolio winners and $2,000 scholarships to Silver Medal Portfolio winners.

How do I apply?

All graduating seniors submitting a collection of six works with accompanying Artist or Writer Statements and Personal Statements (500 words or less) are eligible. When applying, select “Art Portfolio” or “Writing Portfolio” as your category. You will be prompted to include an Artist or Writer Statement and a Personal Statement about your work. 

What should I write about in my artist or writer statement and my personal statement?

Artist/Writer Statement: Write about your art/writing! This required statement should provide insight into your creative process: How did you curate the works in your portfolio? 

Consider questions like: 

  • What do you want viewers to understand about your collection of works? 
  • What are the key ideas, issues, struggles, or goals within the portfolio? 
  • Did you make deliberate decisions about materials, processes, voice, literary devices, etc.? 

Your artist statement should be at least 100 words and must not exceed 500 words. The statement will be visible to jurors. Do not use self-identifying information in the statement. 

Personal Statement: Write about you! Tell a story from your life, describing an experience that either demonstrates your character or helped to shape it. 

Consider questions like: 

  • What is a significant challenge, setback, or failure that you experienced? How did you respond to it? How did it affect you, and what did you learn from the experience? 
  • Have you ever had a long-cherished or accepted belief challenged? How did you respond? How did the challenge affect your beliefs? 

Your personal statement should be at least 100 words and must not exceed 500 words. This statement will be viewed by the scholarship committee if your work receives a Gold Key and goes on to be considered for a national portfolio scholarship award.

Visit our blog for additional tips on crafting your statements.

Who funds the Scholastic Awards’ Portfolio Scholarships?

Every year, the Alliance partners with distinguished individuals and institutions to provide scholarships to students. The Alliance thanks BLICK Art Materials, Command Companies and the Merson Family, Derek Fordjour, Grafica Veneta, the Jay Pritzker Foundation, Jill and Peter Kraus, Maurice R. Robinson Fund, The New York Times, and Dav and Sayuri Pilkey, for helping underwrite the portfolio scholarships.