OKLAHOMA CITY – The Oklahoma Aeronautics Commission has announced the names of students that placed in the 2022 Oklahoma Aviation & Aerospace Art Contest.
The state-level Aviation Art Contest, sponsored by the Aeronautics Commission, encourages youth, ages 6 to 17, to reflect on aviation by designing a piece of art based on the year’s chosen theme.
This year’s contest theme was “Design Your Perfect Aircraft.”
“This contest is a conduit for students to explore aviation,” State Director of Aeronautics Grayson Ardies said. “If we can reach them at the earliest of ages, we can guide them into STEM-based education and aviation and aerospace careers.”
In the Junior Division, ages 6 to 9, Grace Huang, from Truman Elementary School in Norman, took home first prize. This year’s second-place winner in the Junior Division was Elvin Liu Zhu from Frontier Elementary School in Edmond. The third-place winner was Matthew Henderson and Honorable Mention went to Alannah Kavlaity, both from Cyril Elementary School.
Olivia Zhao from Plainview Middle School in Ardmore took top honors in the Intermediate Division, ages 10-13. Taking second was Ava Haick from Yukon Middle School, and third was Chan U. Ieng from Duncan Middle School. Receiving an Honorable Mention in the division was Daphne Greenley, also from Yukon Middle School.
Deer Creek School’s, Marian Winchell, from Edmond finished atop the Senior Division, ages 14-17, followed by Alexis Reichert, a student at Atoka High School. Lilana De Loera took third, while Jose Lopez received an honorable mention in the division. Both students are from Astec Charter High School in Oklahoma City.
First-place winners in each of the three age categories receive $200, while the second-place winners receive $150. A cash prize of $100 is presented to students who place third, and honorable mention will receive $50.
The top three entries in each age division were forwarded to Washington, D.C., where they will compete nationally against other winners from the U.S. for the right to advance to the international competition.
Judges for this year’s art contest included State Representative Nicole Miller, House District 82; Colonel Keven P. Coyle, Commander, 552nd Air Control Wing, Tinker Air Force Base; Lance Lamkin, A.A.E., Airport Administrator at University of Oklahoma; and, Monica Riggs, Engineering Manager for United Dynamics, Inc.
“As a military service member stationed at Tinker Air Force Base, I was impressed to see that nearly 60 Oklahoma schools across the state participated in submitting entries for this art contest,” said Col. Coyle.
”Artistically driven STEM-based programs are a forward-thinking way to embolden young minds to consider the principles of flight,” Coyle continued. “I was proud to be called on by the Aeronautics Commission, and I congratulate the students and teachers on their creative efforts to explore the future of aviation. Outstanding job.”
The 2022 International Aviation Art Contest is sponsored, in large part, by the National Aeronautic Association, Fédération Aéronautique Internationale, National Association of State Aviation Officials, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, National Coalition for Aviation and Space Education, Federal Aviation Administration, and the Ken Cook Co.
“It was a pleasure serving as a judge for the Oklahoma Aeronautics Commission International Aviation Art Contest,” said Rep. Miller. “This program serves as a gateway to introduce Oklahoma children to this valuable industry so they can learn more about the field and begin picturing themselves within aviation and aerospace.”
Lamkin stated, “The love for aviation can start with a spark at any age. It was an absolute pleasure to view these wonderful aviation art submissions with my fellow judges.
The extensive amount of artwork shows me that the passion for aviation is alive and well in the next generation,” he added.
“It was a privilege to spend the day with such outstanding professionals in the Oklahoma Aerospace Community, “Riggs said. “I felt an overwhelming sense of joy in seeing young students create their own perfect aircraft in such detailed design. It’s exciting to see firsthand that our Oklahoma students are interested in STEAM and aviation.”
For more information about the Oklahoma Aeronautics Commission, visit oac.ok.gov.