By OJC staff


In keeping with recommended guidelines surrounding COVID-19, changes were announced to the 64th Otero Arts Festival that will allow visual art senior portfolio students and opportunity to compete in an adjusted format for the scholarships.


Debbie Phillips, coordinator for the event, explained that recent developments limiting large group gatherings created a challenge for organizers to figure out a way to comply with the restrictions while giving students the opportunity for recognition and scholarships.


"The Otero Arts Festival has been an important artistic and cultural event for our area schools for 64 years. It showcases the amazing talent our young students have and we felt that we had to find a way to continue this tradition of recognizing talent, as well as awarding some outstanding scholarships to award winners," explained Phillips.


Visual Arts entry submission consisted of Visual Arts Senior Portfolios competing for the OJC Scholarships. Students competing in this division submitted individual photographs in jpeg format of each of their portfolio art entries for judging.


Recipients of the OJC Visual Art Scholarships and alternate are:


Otero Junior College Visual Art Scholarships


Judson Hudson, Crowley County High School


Hudson will be attending OJC to earn his degree in welding. He was active in high school basketball, track, band and the agricultural program.


"During high school, I was part of our amazing art program for four years," said Hudson. "I have been looking forward to this (OAF Senior Portfolio Contest) since my freshman year and I wish my first art teacher, Tim Goettle, who retired last year was here to celebrate this accomplishment with me. He was one of the most inspiring people I have ever met. Thank you."


Justin is the son of Doug and Chelie Hudson, his art instructor at CCHS is Crystal Cuckow.


Abbygail Snyder, Manzanola High School was also awarded and Otero Arts Festival Visual Art Scholarship for her senior portfolio.


Snyder has not yet declared a major and will be working towards her Associate of Arts in general studies. She was active in high school basketball, volleyball and softball.


Abbygail's art instructor at Manzanola High School is Pamela Hawkins.


Otero Junior College Visual Art Scholarship alternate


Christian McLelland, Crowley County High School


McLelland has not declared a major and will be working towards his Associate of Arts in general studies this fall at OJC. In addition to his enthusiasm for art, he was a member of the basketball team at CCHS.


Christian is the son of Robert and Dana McLelland, his art instructor at CCHS is Crystal Cuckow.


The Otero Arts Festival is the longest running event for students grades 7-12 that is continuing to be sponsored by Otero Junior College.


The 65th Otero Arts Festival will be held in the spring of 2021. Details to be announced at a later date. Questions can be sent via email to Debbie.Phillips@ojc.edu.