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Art students at East Central University received scholarships and cash awards this spring at the Annual Art Awards Reception in the University Gallery. The awards were based on students' portfolio performance in the 53rd Annual Student Exhibition.

"There were many deserving students and the exhibit was one of the best in memory. This made determining winners of awards particularly challenging this year," said Dr. Brad Jessop, chair of the Art Department. "I hope all our students continue to excel."

The Leon Polk Smith Scholarship in the senior class was presented to Scott Johnson of Holdenville who won with his numerous entries of various media in the student show and for his overall classroom performance.

Winning the Leon Polk Smith Scholarship for juniors was Eric Hollingsworth of Ada. He presented a number of strong sculptural works in the exhibition, particularly his work with wire. The Leon Polk Smith award for the sophomore class went to Erica Eppler of Ada.

"Erica has produced a number of high quality works but her prints were of exceptional quality and contributed greatly to the exhibit," Jessop said.

The Gladys Kendall scholarship went to Alex Beebe of Ada who had "a couple of remarkable wash images in the exhibit," Jessop said.

The Grant Thorp Scholarship is awarded to a prodigious student who also demonstrates a dedication to service of others. Jessop said the scholarship was shared by two seniors who plan to graduate next fall, Spencer Ulm of Holdenville and Amber Farnell of Sulphur.

"Amber and Spencer have both excelled as art students and have been very active, accepting leadership roles in the Art Club and excelling in numerous exhibits outside the university," Jessop said. "Both students were featured in the exhibit Momentum Tulsa last summer."

The Emma Box scholarship, named for one of the co-founders of the art department, was awarded to Amy Nix of Seminole. Box was educated at Columbia University and brought that institution's high standards to ECU, Jessop said.

"Amy has excelled in drawings and encaustic, and her works were displayed at the Momentum Oklahoma City Exhibit," he said. "Her work, coupled with her work ethic, is in keeping with the traditions Ms. Box embodied and wished to encourage with this scholarship."

The Ada Artist Association sponsored a scholarship that was awarded to Erin Wetherill of Ada for her works in silver.

Cash awards were presented to two seniors who demonstrated excellence. Zach Presley of Ada received the Dean's Award. The Chair's award went to Lance Newman of Holdenville.



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