Student Artist of the Month: April/May 2018


In partnership with Forsyth County high schools and Windsor Jewelers, The Arts Council of Winston-Salem and Forsyth County is proud to present the Student Artist of the Month.

All Forsyth County high schools (private, public, and charter) that have arts programming were invited to participate in the Student Artist of the Month program. Arts educators and administrators from each school will select one student each month for recognition based on academic rigor and artistic merit.  A variety of arts disciplines will be recognized over the course of the school year.

Cora McAnulty

Atkins Academic & Technology High School

Principal: Joe Childers

SAM Coordinator: Janet Blakely

Nominating Teacher: Janet Blakely

Arts Discipline: Visual Arts

Grade: 10

GPA/QPA: 4.4

What is your favorite part of the arts genre in which you were selected? I enjoy being able to use different materials and techniques to create beautiful pieces of art.

Where would you most like to attend college and what might be your major? I would like to attend a North Carolina College and major in the arts.

What is your proudest artistic accomplishment? Representing my school and helping them to win artistic awards.

How will the arts influence your future career? I hope to continue doing art my whole life and to have a career in the arts.

Ballard Huey

Atkins Academic & Technology High School

Principal: Joe Childers

SAM Coordinator: Janet Blakely

Nominating Teacher: Justin Sumners

Arts Discipline: Band

Grade: 11

GPA/QPA: 4.6

What is your favorite part of the arts genre in which you were selected? The incredible feeling that you get when a skilled group is all on the same page at the same time.

Where would you most like to attend college and what might be your major? UC Berkeley studying Engineering Physics.

What is your proudest artistic accomplishment? Making All District Band consistently since middle school.

How will the arts influence your future career? No matter what I do I want to continue music, maybe not as a career, but certainly for enjoyment

Minji Baek

Bishop McGuinness High School

Principal: Tracy Shaw

Nominating Teacher: Alan Hirsh

Arts Discipline: Music

Grade: 11

GPA/QPA: 4.33

What is your favorite part of the arts genre in which you were selected? My favorite part is playing instruments and learning about Music theory. I’ve been in orchestra since I was sophomore. I play percussion, especially drum-sets. I spend lots of time working my parts when I get new music. I feel enthusiasm when I play instruments. Also, I’m taking Music theory this year. In the beginning of the school year, I struggled in that class. However, I tried to do my best and worked hard; I got A’s each quarter in this Music theory class. Music theory is hard to understand because this is my first time learning the actual theory of music, which means a deeper dive into the core of what music is. However, I love this class because I learned lots of things and I found amazing things through this class, I have perfect pitch! I’m so glad that I am taking both classes.

Where would you most like to attend college and what might be your major? I want to attend college in Korea, like Hanyang University, Yonsei University, or Sungkyunkwan University. The reason why I want to attend these schools are because I want to live with my family. I am living with my sister in United States for study abroad, but my parents are living in Korea, which means the only time that I can see my parents is during summer vacation. And I’m going to major in Music or there is a specific program in Korea where I can study to become a flight attendant.

What is your proudest artistic accomplishment? My proudest artistic accomplishment is when I played the musical “The Addams Family.” I played the drum sets and I worked really hard. I was really stressed out during tech week or after school when I practiced. However, I worked really hard to get my parts, and I did awesome in the Musical. It was my first musical to play orchestra so I was very nervous and worried, but it was a really great experience and my best accomplishment.

How will the arts influence your future career? I haven’t decided it yet but I also hope to become a Music Therapist. When I feel sad or stressed, music makes me calm and helps me relax. I want to become a music therapist and help others feel joy from music the way that I do.



Davis Wood

Calvary Day School

Principal: Rick Bohner

SAM Coordinator: Vera Boston

Nominating Teacher: Vera Boston

Arts Discipline: Performing Art

Grade: 12

What is your favorite part of the arts genre in which you were selected? I like to portray different characters because it’s fun to become another person for a few hours.

Where would you most like to attend college and what might be your major? UNCW – Theater.

What is your proudest artistic accomplishment? In my senior year I played the lead role as Scrooge in A Christmas Carol and Henry Higgins in My Fair Lady.

How will the arts influence your future career? I would love to be an actor. The arts have given me the opportunity to discover a passion that I’d like to continue in the rest of my life.Davis Wood

Calvary Day School

Principal: Rick Bohner

SAM Coordinator: Vera Boston

Nominating Teacher: Vera Boston

Arts Discipline: Performing Art

Grade: 12

What is your favorite part of the arts genre in which you were selected? I like to portray different characters because it’s fun to become another person for a few hours.

Where would you most like to attend college and what might be your major? UNCW – Theater.

What is your proudest artistic accomplishment? In my senior year I played the lead role as Scrooge in A Christmas Carol and Henry Higgins in My Fair Lady.

How will the arts influence your future career? I would love to be an actor. The arts have given me the opportunity to discover a passion that I’d like to continue in the rest of my life.


Davis Wood

Calvary Day School

Principal: Rick Bohner

SAM Coordinator: Vera Boston

Nominating Teacher: Vera Boston

Arts Discipline: Performing Art

Grade: 12

What is your favorite part of the arts genre in which you were selected? I like to portray different characters because it’s fun to become another person for a few hours.

Where would you most like to attend college and what might be your major? UNCW – Theater.

What is your proudest artistic accomplishment? In my senior year I played the lead role as Scrooge in A Christmas Carol and Henry Higgins in My Fair Lady.

How will the arts influence your future career? I would love to be an actor. The arts have given me the opportunity to discover a passion that I’d like to continue in the rest of my life.


Rebekah Smith

Career Center

Principal: Chris Nichols

Nominating Teacher: Toni Graves

Arts Discipline: Visual Art

Grade: 12

GPA/QPA: 4.625

What is your favorite part of the arts genre in which you were selected? My favorite part of visual art is definitely exploring and exaggerating colors and textures. That’s why oil has become my primary medium.

Where would you most like to attend college and what might be your major? I plan to attend Lander University and major in Elementary Education.

What is your proudest artistic accomplishment? I value self-development over awards or contests. I never thought I’d be able to keep up with AP work, but I did. I’ve made 24 pieces this year. I am proud of that.

How will the arts influence your future career? I want to become an elementary school teacher. Growing up, the arts was not a big part of my education in the earlier years. I want to address that for future generations. I believe that a firm foundation with the arts incorporated daily is integral to the development children. Creativity should be encouraged to grow.


Thomas Martin

Carver High School

Principal: Carol Montague-Davis

SAM Coordinator: Julia Puckett

Nominating Teacher: Ken Suber

Arts Discipline: Art

Grade: 12

GPA/QPA: 3.8

What is your favorite part of the arts genre in which you were selected? Architectural Renderings. I enjoy drawing houses.

Where would you most like to attend college and what might be your major? North Carolina A&T and major in Business.

What is your proudest artistic accomplishment? My Still Life drawing.

How will the arts influence your future career? It keeps me open to new ideas.


DaShanti Glenn

Carver High School

Principal: Carol Montague-Davis

SAM Coordinator: Julia Puckett

Nominating Teacher: Mrs. Kinne

Arts Discipline: Dance

Grade: 9

GPA/QPA: 2.8

What is your favorite part of the arts genre in which you were selected? Learning and studying different styles of dance and then using them to create my own dances.

Where would you most like to attend college and what might be your major? I would like to go to ECU and study biology.



What is your proudest artistic accomplishment? Creating projects and performing them for others.

How will the arts influence your future career? I really enjoy working with other people, and helping teach when other students are having trouble.

Nicole Holmes

East Forsyth High School

Principal: Rodney Bass

SAM Coordinator: Roman Brady

Nominating Teacher: Tiffany Burgess

Arts Discipline: Theatre Arts

Grade: 11

GPA/QPA: 3.85

What is your favorite part of the arts genre in which you were selected? Getting the opportunity to share mine and others ideas and art with many others.

Where would you most like to attend college and what might be your major? Elon University, Musical Theatre

What is your proudest artistic accomplishment? I am proud of the interactions I have had with other in my community from any show I’ve ever done.

How will the arts influence your future career? The arts will be a large part of all of my future career through not only theatre, but my interest in other fine arts like writing.


Sofia Aguilar

East Forsyth

Principal: Rodney Bass

SAM Coordinator: Roman Brady

Nominating Teacher: Susan Johnson

Arts Discipline: Visual Arts/Painting

Grade: 10

What is your favorite part of the arts genre in which you were selected? My favorite part of painting would be seeing the final look of it.

Where would you most like to attend college and what might be your major? I would like to attend NC State University and be a Graphic Design major.

What is your proudest artistic accomplishment? My proudest artistic accomplishment would be getting best in show on my animal painting.

How will the arts influence your future career? I would like to include my own work in it for people to acknowledge the work I would put into it and with the arts influence I will be able to do that with more practice.

Lydia Yu

Forsyth Country Day

Head of School: Gardner Barrier

SAM Coordinator: John Kildahl

Nominating Teacher: Aaron Craven

Arts Discipline: Violin/Orchestra

Grade: 11

GPA/QPA: 4.4

What is your favorite part of the arts genre in which you were selected? I enjoy every single orchestra class I take with Forsyth Country Day School Orchestra. I love playing music with a group of friends who also enjoy it. I love the sense of accomplishment when we get to hear our own recordings.

Where would you most like to attend college and what might be your major? I haven’t started the applications, but I want to attend schools in Boston. I’m very likely going to pursue psychology as my major, but I’ve been seriously thinking of pursuing music as a minor.

What is your proudest artistic accomplishment? I am very proud to take part in 2018 ASTA program, and I’ve earned 5th chair in violin I section.

How will the arts influence your future career? Arts can never disappear from my life. With arts my life never gets boring: wherever I go I can take my instrument and play for a while or pick up a pencil and draw whatever is around me. Arts fuel creative thinking-I found out the more I pursue arts, the deeper I can think divergently.


Jackson Halus

Forsyth Country Day

Head of School: Gardner Barrier

SAM Coordinator: John Kildahl

Nominating Teacher: John Kildahl

Arts Discipline: Music and Graphic Design

Grade: 12

GPA/QPA: 4.13

What is your favorite part of the arts genre in which you were selected? Making and recording music along with graphic design.

Where would you most like to attend college and what might be your major? Either University of Vermont or San Diego University. I want to major in music technology.

What is your proudest artistic accomplishment? My proudest artistic accomplishment is probably the EP I just released with my band Makeout Point.

How will the arts influence your future career? I plan on being a music technology major, so music and art will most likely be a huge part of my life.


Megan Otey

Glenn High School

Principal: Brad Craddock

SAM Coordinator: Jonathan Miller

Nominating Teacher: Michaela Richards

Arts Discipline: Theatre, Chorus, Art

Grade: 12

GPA/QPA: 4.0

What is your favorite part of the arts genre in which you were selected? Meeting new people and having fun times.

Where would you most like to attend college and what might be your major? UNCG and Pre-Pharmacy.

What is your proudest artistic accomplishment? Being in the musical, Bugsy Malone, as a gangster.

How will the arts influence your future career? It has improved my skills working with others.


Lori Wagoner

Glenn High School

Principal: Brad Craddock

SAM Coordinator: Jonathan Miller

Nominating Teacher: Mrs. Richards

Arts Discipline: Theatre Arts

Grade: 12

GPA/QPA: 3.8

What is your favorite part of the arts genre in which you were selected? My favorite part about theatre is the opportunity to be a leader and learn new things.

Where would you most like to attend college and what might be your major? I will be attending Greensboro College and I plan to major in design and production.

What is your proudest artistic accomplishment? My proudest artistic accomplishments are being the lead role in my sophomore and junior year musicals, and being able to direct my own play senior year.

How will the arts influence your future career? I’m majoring in the arts.


Julia Holgado

Mount Tabor

Principal: Ed Weiss

Nominating Teacher: Chad Edwards

Arts Discipline: Theatre Arts

Grade: 12

GPA/QPA: 4.25

What is your favorite part of the arts genre in which you were selected? I enjoy portraying characters different from myself and relating my life with theirs. I also love the relationship between the stage and the audience, when emotions are clearly sketched by the actors and is well received by the house.

Where would you most like to attend college and what might be your major? I’m attending Forsyth Tech this coming fall and possibly Wake Forest in the future for Physical Therapy.

What is your proudest artistic accomplishment? Five years ago I made my debut with Cinderella in our middle school production, I only had one line all throughout the play, this year I got to be the lead in “The Diviners”.

How will the arts influence your future career? I have fallen in love with acting and would love to do more shows post-graduation. Performing has made me come out of my shell and be more outspoken than I was, thanks to the great people I have worked with in the past. It also taught me to make my own decisions when needed.


Vanessa Urena

Parkland High School

Principal: Spencer Hardy

SAM Coordinator: Tara Hauser

Nominating Teacher: Hilary Belinger

Arts Discipline: Orchestra

Grade: 10

GPA/QPA: 3.33

What is your favorite part of the arts genre in which you were selected? What I find most enjoyable about being involved in the music industry Is the fact that everyday there is something new to learn. I love being able to express myself through music. Its one of the few things that always helps keep things off my mind.

Where would you most like to attend college and what might be your major? As a sophomore, I’m still debating on where I want to attend. I have been thinking about taking place in the health department. I love working with people or probably just socializing in general. All I do know is that I need to act quicker on deciding. High school actually is going by pretty fast.

What is your proudest artistic accomplishment? I would say that my proudest artistic accomplishment took place my freshmen year. I came to high school not knowing I would be in the marching band, being that I play violin and am a member of the orchestra. I watched them perform and I knew I had to be a part of it. The only problem was, I didn’t know how to play a band instrument. Luckily the band director didn’t mind and still gave me the opportunity to join. With the help of others in the band, I learned how to play the clarinet in about 3 months and still continue to learn more everyday.

How will the arts influence your future career? I’m not planning on doing anything big in the future with music, but of course I will continue to play just for my own sake. It’s a beautiful thing being able to play a piece and letting people hear, so why end that ability.


Juan Saucedo

Parkland High School

Principal: Spencer Hardy

SAM Coordinator: Tara Hauser

Nominating Teacher: Hilary Belinger

Arts Discipline: Band

Grade: 9

GPA/QPA: 4.2

What is your favorite part of the arts genre in which you were selected? The discovery of new styles of music and exposure to different cultures.

Where would you most like to attend college and what might be your major? Forsyth Tech Community College. Plumbing, Welding, and Electrician.

What is your proudest artistic accomplishment? Making All-County 3 consecutive years.

How will the arts influence your future career? It may be a skill used on the side.


Meghan Cluskey

Reagan High School

Principal: Brad Royal

SAM Coordinator: Jennifer Willard

Nominating Teacher: Mignon Dobbins

Arts Discipline: Chorus

Grade: 11

GPA/QPA: 4.45