BELEN — Two recent Belen High School graduates were awarded $500 Belen Art League Scholarships.
Jordan Jaramillo, who was one of Belen High School’s valedictorians for 2023, has been part of a dance troupe for 15 years, and performed at Walt Disney World. She was accepted as a performer in New York City to dance in front of the Statue of Liberty.
Her extracurricular activities include cheerleading, working with elderly veterans, acting as a health ambassador for the 4-H program and being a leader in the children’s ministry at her church.
Jaramillo will be attending Grand Canyon Univeristy in Phoenix, Ariz., and will be majoring in psychology with the goal of becoming a psychotherapist.
In her essay, “What Art Means to Me,” Jaramillo wrote she used art to create characters she’s read about or viewed in a movie. This enables her to further use her art to depict her real life developments.
For Jaramillo, art is a way to decompress and escape the humdrum of daily reality and emerge herself deep within her own thoughts.
She chose to do a portrait of Celia Bowen from the book, “The Night Circus.” Celia is an illusionist in the circus. The reader is never sure whether Celia is a true magic person or just a good trickster.
Dariya Malanyuk is originally from Ternopil, Ukraine, coming to the United States when she was very young.
She has a cumulative 4.0 GPA while maintaining perfect attendance. She was also the one of the valedictorians for the graduating class of 2023 at Belen High School.
Malanyuk was acknowledged by the College Board Nation Recognition Award, honored by the city of Belen for her speech regarding the work of Health Ambassadors, she led the Mountainair 4-H club as vice president and twice participated in the 4-H National Healthy Living Conference In Washington, D.C.
She is responsible for the maintenance of a private poultry farm, which requires her attention from the incubator to the freezer. She provides Thanksgiving meals (to the needy) through her local church and creates bags of necessities to distribute to the homeless. Malanyuk volunteers her time in local elementary schools assisting teachers where needed.
In preparation for college, Malanyuk will earn her associate degree in liberal arts with an English concentration.
In her essay, “What Art Means to Me,” she describes art as a “telescope pinpointing a moment, a place, a story … an emotional time capsule.” She believes art is an examination of the human condition, not always pretty or pleasant, a window into another’s life or emotions.
Her art entry was a colored-ink drawing she did of her little brother, David, during the Covid pandemic and it’s based on Rodin’s “The Thinker.” Her drawing is titled, “The Little Thinker.” Dariya will be attending UNM majoring in business administration.
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