U.S. Rep Kathy Castor recently announced that Leto High senior Jairo Argueta earned the Congressional Choice Award in the annual Congressional Art Contest.
Argueta won for his watercolor paintingNature Is My Companion. Argueta said he has been drawing all his life, but a pottery class at Leto High was his first art class. He now seeks to enter his artwork into any exhibit or competition he comes across in Tampa.
"Exhibits let me see other people's art and I learn more," he said.
Castor noted during a March 31 reception at the Tampa Museum of Art that a recent Creative Industries report indicated the Tampa Bay area is home to more than 2,200 arts-related businesses that employ more than 10,000 people.
"The students proved what we know: Tampa Bay is a vibrant, creative community," Castor said.
Jairo will travel to Washington, D.C., in June to compete against 435 other high school artists from across the country.
Other winners in the contest: museum award, Joshua Van Dijk, Blake High; photography award, Addison Grams, Berkeley Prep; first place overall, Carmelle Kuizon, Academy of Holy Names; second place overall, Darby Carver, Blake High; third place overall, Logan Weldon, Berkeley Prep; first place water media, Claire Anderson, Plant High; second place water media, Lola Rosas, Tampa Prep; third place water media, Olivia Santiago, Blake High.
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We Deliver Award: The Hillsborough County School District is seeking nominations for its annual We Deliver Award, which honors the recipient with a $10,000 check from the Education Foundation. In its eighth year, the award honors a school district employee who goes above and beyond for students and/or the community. The nominee should also be a person who has done more than is required while dealing with a personal struggle. The nomination period ends April 22. For information on nomination criteria and a link to the nomination form, go to www.sdhc.k12.fl.us/wedeliver/ or call Karin Davis-Thompson at (813) 840-7059.
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Turnaround success: Eisenhower Middle School honored the following students at its latest turnaround breakfast celebration: sixth-graders Kimberly Lazano, Ulises Paretas, Michael Radtke, Brandon Paulsen and Jakil Powell; seventh-graders Isaiah Ershery, Hunter Gaviglia, Cameron Gaviglia, Kaiya Gritzinger, Ana Reyes, Detrone Jones, Faith Archie and Richard Arce; and eighth-graders Briana Arthur, Joshua Mendez and Jared Duckstein. The students enjoyed a catered breakfast and certificate of achievement, and three students received a free iPad from school business partner Waterset.
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Jesuit musicians: Several Jesuit students recently received the highest rating possible at state solo and ensemble competitions across the state. Seniors Sebastian Botero (singing) and Joonsung Suh (piano) received the rating of superior while performing at the state vocal competition at Seminole State College the weekend of March 28. Earlier in March, senior Austin Booth (piano) and sophomore Zack Sullivan (guitar) earned superior ratings at the state orchestra competition at Brandon High. Senior Michael Lee (flute) received the rating of superior with distinction at the state band competition at Sanford Seminole High. At the district level, two other Jesuit sophomores received superior ratings: Grant Kurtz (alto saxophone) and Spencer Whipple (violin).
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Tampa Prep teacher earns distinction: Tampa Prep history teacher Kim Jago has been selected as co-chairwoman of the Advanced Placement European History Development Committee. Jago has served on the national AP European History Curriculum Development Committee since 2012. She is one of two secondary school committee members, composed primarily of post-secondary educators. Jago has taught history and related electives at Tampa Prep since 1988 and was chairwoman of the school's Department of History and Social Sciences.
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Robotics week: The Tampa-based Florida Advance Technological Education Center will host a regionwide event from 3 to 6 p.m. Saturday at Hillsborough Community College Brandon to celebrate national robotics week in Tampa. As part of this effort, the center will partner with local engineering and robotics clubs throughout Tampa Bay to showcase applications of robotics technology in industrial and everyday settings. Educators, students, industry professionals andanyone interested in STEM and robotics are invited to participate in the interactive event.