Young Artist Wins 1st Place in State Art Competition

West Columbia, SC Celebrating creativity throughout crisis, East Point Academy 5th grader

Olivia Li poses 1st place award.
Li’s winning self-portrait.

Olivia Li earns top prize for her self-portrait in the state-wide Youth Art Month! contest. The show is sponsored by the South Carolina Art Education Association, which “…advances visual arts education to fulfill human potential and promote global understanding” ( About winning the prize, Olivia said “I feel really proud…but the real reason I won is because I have such an amazing art teacher!” East Point Academy art teacher Yisha Wang encourages young artists through a robust program including Art Club, Chinese Calligraphy, and ceramics. “I like my students to challenge themselves and experience being comfortable outside of their comfort zones,” said Wang “Olivia is one of my students who enjoys being creative and challenged.” 

In addition to being a Language Immersion school, East Point Academy also focuses on Arts Integration. Related Arts teachers at East Point work closely with classroom teachers to develop multi-layered projects in all content areas. According to assistant Principal for Elementary, Ashley Cohoon “Arts integration is a tremendous part of our rigorous academics at East Point Academy. We are blessed with a very talented Related Arts team who teach students through their passion for the Arts.” 

Lily with her winning #PandaStrong design.

Also selected to represent East Point Academy at the Youth Art Month! show was 7th grader Lily Blum for her realistic colored pencil drawing. Lily is a talented artist who recently won East Point’s #PandaStrong t-shirt contest. Both students had their art displayed at EdVenture Children’s Museum. Due to COVID-19, the awards reception was cancelled, but artwork from the state winners can still be viewed in a virtual art show on SCAEA website. When reflecting on her students, Wang said “T

Blum’s cat portrait.

here is no doubt Olivia and Lily are talented girls. Both work very hard to learn art techniques, and both practice daily to support their creativity and growth.”


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