NORFOLK, Va. — It's the type of contest that showcases just how smart and talented teenagers can be.
Walgreens is noticing.
The drug store giant is calling on high school students to put their best artistic foot forward through its Expressions Challenge.
Artistic high school students across the country have until April 3 to submit artwork for prize money. They can express themselves in Visual Arts, Spoken Word, and Media Arts on a number of topics including self-esteem, positivity, gender identity, depression, climate change, the pandemic, or whatever issue is most important to them.
Prizes range from $1,500 to $2,000 In addition, a $1,000 People's Champ prize is awarded.
The Expressions Challenge contest serves a dual purpose by giving teens an outlet to express themselves following the isolation during the pandemic.
Norfolk's Booker T. Washington High School senior Ayana Askew is one of last year's winners for her original poem, Is Justice Blind?
"I initially wrote the poem after the death of George Floyd... after I saw the video of the eight minutes and I started to cry," Ayana said.
Enrolling in Spelman College in Atlanta this fall, Ayana said she's been writing poetry since elementary school. Her award-winning entry encapsulates the many emotions of repeated killings of African American men and boys at the hands of law enforcement.
"One day, I just went up in my room and I just started to write and that is what came to mind," she said.