A Senior at a York County, SC, High School Wins an Art School Scholarship and Says – No Thanks

Shelby Williams, a 17-year old senior at Northwestern High School in York County, SC, isn’t letting awards and scholarship money go to her head.

Williams’ artwork, Going Places, was the top winner of the 2012 Congressional Art Competition (5th Congressional District) in South Carolina. She won a $100 from the York County Art Council and a $3,000 scholarship to attend the Savannah College of Art and Design, SCAD. But Williams has no intention of using that scholarship as she has plans to open a custom auto paint shop in the future.

Williams didn’t even know her work was entered into the competition until after she learned she had won.

Read more here: (http://www.heraldonline.com/2012/06/28/4080630/rock-hill-student-garners-national.html#storylink=cpy).

Williams is one smart gal. A full tuition to SCAD is about $20,000 a year. The odds of her ever making a return on that kind of investment in being an artist is slim to none. She’ll have a better chance at success in the auto paint shop business.

The point is – not everyone who likes art or even those who are good at creating art should become artists. And, the way things are today, the art community doesn’t need more artists – it needs more art patrons and supporters. In fact Williams has a better shot at contributing to the art community by being successful in the auto paint shop industry and then buying art and supporting the arts with her profits.

We need lots of people who appreciate the arts, are willing to support the arts, are willing to have their tax dollars go towards supporting the arts, and who are willing to participate in the arts. We have no shortage of artists.

Good lucky Shelby – we’re all counting on you!

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