With great talent comes great opportunity

By: Stephanie Wilcox Special to The News Messenger
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Becoming an artist isn?t as easy as it seems. However, when the opportunity of a lifetime came knocking, a young artist in Lincoln took the chance. Sherry Jeffs, a Lincoln High School senior, went through a rigorous application process to the California State Summer School for the Arts program and was accepted. Unfortunately, the price to attend was a little intensive at $1,500 and Jeffs? hopes of attending this program dwindled. But thanks to a scholarship from the California Institute of the Arts, the amount was cut in half and Lighthouse Counseling & Family Resource Center in Lincoln agreed to pay the rest to ensure Jeffs? ability to experience a growing artist?s life on a college campus. The idea came about when Jeffs? art teacher at Lincoln High School, Jill Foley, told her that she would be a magnificent candidate for this program. Foley said she was thrilled with the entire situation. ?I?m just really proud of her because at first she wasn?t quite sure, didn?t have the self-confidence to think she might be able to actually get accepted but she went ahead and did all the work, which was considerable,? Foley said. ?It was like a college application. She had to do a portfolio and get all kinds of essays done and application forms filled out and teacher recommendations and she just did all of it and turned it in and it worked out really well for her.? This opportunity is significant to Jeffs. When she found out she was accepted, Jeffs said, ?I was really, really excited because all my friends that applied didn?t get accepted and they really wanted to go too so it was like a big deal to me.? The California State Summer School for the Arts is for students who wish to pursue a career in the arts. According to its website, it is ?a four-week summer program for talented and motivated high school students in California and beyond.? The visual arts program that Jeffs will attend has courses in figure drawing, design, painting, digital media, printmaking, sculpture, ceramics and photography. In addition, students visit museums and attend workshops on producing masterpieces. Jeffs will live in a California Institute of the Arts dorm with other students interested in the same field as she is from Saturday to Aug. 10. She is excited to ?just see what college is like because I only have a year left until I?m actually going to be at a college and being by myself for four weeks and learning all new art stuff.? Jeffs expressed her gratitude toward everyone who made this possible by saying, ?Thank you a lot and I?m so happy. This is like the next step to my future career.? Stephanie Wilcox is a Lincoln High School student and Zebra Tales Editor in Chief.