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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 with Distinction 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?

Your Artist or Writer Statement should provide insight into the creative processes used to render the collection of works in your portfolio. These statements must not exceed 500 words and will be viewable by jurors. Do not use self-identifying information in your statements. Below are prompts that may help in crafting your statement:

  • What do you want your audience 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 and processes (for art portfolios) or voice and literary devices (for writing portfolios)? 

For the Personal Statement, tell a story from your life, describing an experience that either demonstrates your character or helped to shape it. Your Personal Statement must not exceed 500 words and will not be available to view by jurors. It may, however, be viewed by the scholarship committee should your portfolio advance to the national round of awards selection. Below are prompts that may help in crafting your Personal Statement:

  • 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?

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, the Jay Pritzker Foundation, Jill and Peter Kraus, Maurice R. Robinson Fund, The New York Times, Dav and Sayuri Pilkey, the Roome Fund, and Quad and the Windhover Foundation, for helping underwrite the portfolio scholarships.