NEWS RELEASE: Boys and Girls Club of Cheyenne
CHEYENNE, Wyo. (Oct. 2, 2012) – A Cheyenne youth, Aric Bruce, 9, has won a national competition for photography. Bruce is a member of the Boys & Girls Club of Cheyenne, where he participated in the Boys & Girls Clubs of America's ImageMakers Photography Contest. His winning photograph has been displayed in a touring international exhibit.
Bruce's engaging photograph of a red wheel on a train taken through a chain-link fence at Cheyenne's Holiday Park advanced from the local competition to the regional level and then on to the national level where he won first place in the Digital Photography category for 6-8 year-olds. (He was 8 when the photo was taken.) ImageMakers National Photography Program is a comprehensive initiative encouraging artistic skills and cultural enrichment.
"I thought that maybe taking a picture through a chain and having some leaves would be cool, plus the red wheel," said Bruce. "I thought I would never win, but I did."
Bruce said he had never won anything like this before, and it makes him want to continue taking photos. In fact, he said he now wants to be a photographer when he grows up. His older brother, Ethan, added that he has started taking photographs because of his brother's example and success.
Studies conducted by the Department of Education find that academic grades, standardized test scores, measured reading levels and attitudes concerning commitment to community were all higher for students involved in the arts. By offering a dynamic art program, including photography, the Club is helping to improve the lives of youth as well as the community as a whole.
"The arts program at the Club allows our members an opportunity to discover their passions and express their feelings and emotions in a healthy, productive way," said the Club's Executive Director, Rolinda Sample. "That means they are less likely to engage in risky behaviors and are more able to focus on their studies and, ultimately, contribute positively to society."