VSA Florida is proud to announce Abigail Huang and Curtis Hall as the May 2017 Students of the Month.
8-year-old Abigail was nominated by Deborah Knispel, Arts Integration Specialist for UCP of Central Florida in Orlando. Ms. Knispel writes, “Abigail is not your average young girl playing the piano. Although she is mostly non-verbal in class, Abigail conveys her emotions and feelings through music. It is how her spirit takes wing and soars to great heights.” Abigail struggles socially within the classroom setting. However, when her peers watch videos of her performances, everyone seems to connect with this talented young musician. Abigail, considered a piano prodigy, has been studying and performing since she was 4 years old when her parents discovered her calling to music. Ms. Knispel explains, “It is truly magical to see the transformation when Abigail gets in front of a piano to practice and perform. Abigail becomes more confident in her music and performing in public at more recitals.” Samples of Abigail’s work can be viewed at www.abigailhuang.com.
19-year-old Curtis was nominated by Sherry Ross, his art teacher at Tenoroc High School in Lakeland, Florida. She writes with pride, “Curtis is such a positive spirit. He is always smiling and a true joy to have in class and be around. His artwork is lovely and he has a group of collectors that compete to purchase his new works.” Despite having a rare form of Multiple Sclerosis, Curtis loves to draw and paint, and is currently enrolled in Ms. Ross’s Advanced Placement Art class. Curtis has exhibited his work in numerous school and county shows.
The VSAFL Student of the Month Program is designed to increase public awareness and recognize the impact arts make on students with disabilities statewide. Students who participate in the arts develop creativity, have increased self-confidence, understand teamwork, have increased language and math skills and are generally more engaged.
For more information about the Student of the Month program and others, please visit www.vsafl.org.