34th Annual “Touch the Future” Art Show Honors Bucks & Montgomery High School Students

Christine Tarlecki
By
Artist: Kaitlyn Pine.

Top works of art from Bucks and Montgomery County high school students were featured during the 34th Annual “Touch the Future” art show, presented virtually this year in collaboration with Montgomery County Community College.

“Touch the Future” is a professionally juried art exhibit created in honor of Christa McAuliffe, the NASA teacher and astronaut who passed away in the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster. McAuliffe’s motto was “I touch the future…I teach.”

Touch the Future is sponsored by the Mideastern Region of the Pennsylvania State Education Association and the Council for the Advancement of Public Schools. MCCC Galleries Director Patrick Rodgers created the virtual venue for the show, which can be viewed on Artsteps Virtual Gallery.

Artist: Kaylee Corbi.

“Despite the challenges over the past year, our teachers have been working diligently to help our students create – whether they are learning virtually or in-person,” said Bill Senavaitis, President of PSEA’s Mideastern Region. “It is so inspiring to see the creativity of our Bucks and Montgomery County public school artists.”

“The virtual show highlights the staggering amount of talent in our schools and the virtual nature of the event allows anyone to view the show at their convenience,” Senavaitis added.

The show launched on Friday, March 19. Two hundred students from 21 local high schools, supported by 74 teachers, participated in the show.

The winners of the juried show were selected by Liz Long, Admissions Counselor at Temple University’s Tyler School of Art.

The 2021 show awarded 19 prizes totaling $3,450 to students from 13 high schools across Bucks and Montgomery Counties.

“The entire Montco Family is very proud of the students represented in the show and the opportunity to celebrate their accomplishments,” said Dr. Victoria L. Bastecki-Perez, President of Montgomery County Community College.

“We are pleased to partner with the region’s school districts to virtually host the ‘Touch the Future’ Art Show that honors Christa McAuliffe and her motto, particularly this year as MCCC plans to open a Challenger Learning Center at our Pottstown Campus in the fall.”

Artist: Jonah Srulavich.

Collaborating with Challenger Center, a nonprofit founded by the families of the astronauts who passed away in the tragic Challenger accident 35 years ago, MCCC will be bringing the first Challenger Learning Center to Pennsylvania.

The Challenger Learning Center will help to bolster the state’s ongoing STEM education initiatives and shape the future by providing hands-on, experiential learning opportunities for thousands of students each year.

Award winners are listed below; photographs are available.

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AWARD/CATEGORYSTUDENT NAMESCHOOLTITLETEACHER
1st Place Best of ShowKaylee CorbiNorth Penn High SchoolExperimentColleen Cooney-Irwin
2nd Place Best of ShowKaitlyn PineCouncil Rock High School SouthCitizenship of motherhoodMichael Catalano
3rd Place Best of ShowJonah Srulavich Harriton High SchoolTrapped in SolitudeKate Witman
CATEGORY AWARDS
PrintmakingMadeline FordhamAbington Sr. High SchoolYou But BetterDavid Ferro
Digital Photography   Olivia SpenserNeshaminy High SchoolWonderTerry O’Neill
Drawing- Black & WhiteJillian Sedlacsik William Tennent High SchoolHarmonious Reflections Wendy Collins
Jewelry/MetalsJulia Hoeffner Harriton High SchoolFaces of My Life Laura Labrinakos 
Color Drawing Sabrina EisenburgCentral Bucks High School EastNature’s Kitchen Helene Moriarty 
Fiber CraftsMegan Lysek-HagyPennridge High SchoolBird Jacket Sarah Moos
Digital Imaging/Computer GraphicsTristen SantosSpring-Ford Senior High SchoolWomen’s Victory Chad Strickler 
Painting-Acrylic/Oil Sophia ChoiNorth Penn High SchoolSea of StressJamie Flynn 
Watercolor April XiaoCouncil Rock High School NorthSelf Portrait Jim Biglan 
2-D Mixed Media  Olivia Dunn Bensalem High SchoolCollage of Little GirlJocelyn Ulrich 
3-D Functional Kevin OleksiakPennsbury High SchoolBottleneckJon Twersky
3-D Single Medium SculptureAnya KochanowiczSpringfield Township High SchoolMe Cubed Mark Kobasz
3-D Mixed Media SculptureValerie Hafner North Penn High SchoolNightbreedJoanne Carrick
Dr. Selma Burke Sculpture Award Taylor JonesAbington HSBlue FlowerKatharine Shields 
Sue Castle Memorial AwardSophia GuzmanWilliam TennentBlack BeautyTara Hering
Rosemary HamiltonSarah BuckleyWilliam TennetPretty in PinkRena Friedant
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