Harrisites’ talents pay off

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The stroke of a pen, the sound of the pawn sliding across the board, the click of a camera: these are familiar sounds for some students at Townsend Harris.

In an effort to relieve the stress of constant work or make a little spending money,  THHS students use various skills to compete in competitions, statewide and nationally, winning monetary prizes along the way.

Sophomore Shawn Roy participates in chess competitions across New York, especially at the Marshall Chess Club.

Similarly, senior Jasmine Brite was one of five students awarded a “Silver Medal” at the 2015 “From the Bow Seat Contest” in the Poetry section, also receiving money for her accomplishment.

Jasmine has entered poetry contests in the past, including the New Voices Young Writers competition in sophomore year, winning honorable mention.

While many students today compete to win money to put towards college, Jasmine decided to instead “use it for [her] senior dues” and other miscellaneous expenses.

Unlike Jasmine, Shawn plans to “save most of the money I win to pay for college.”

Neither Jasmine nor Shawn wish to a pursue a career involving their talents, although they wish to continue participating in competitions in the future.

Shawn says, “I might teach during college and continue to play at tournaments.”

Jasmine continued, “I see myself writing poetry for more contests. I like doing it when I’m given a good topic.”

For students interested in photography, Art teacher Margherita Wischerth suggests the Photographer’s Forum Magazine photography contest which provides winners with a monetary prize.

However, Ms. Wischerth explains that “Most art competitions in which the students’ work is entered help students receive recognition for their artistic talent… as opposed to winning money.”