My students were inspired by the experience; their parents were beaming with pride.  I feel it is always good to expand their realm of possibilities. The Mayor’s Art Scholarship Contest does just that.  Your team has done an excellent job communicating, disseminating information and answering all of our questions in a timely manner.  So, on behalf of myself and my students at Booker T. Washington, we congratulate you on a job well done!


- Maya Imani Watson, Art Teacher & Yearbook Coordinator

Booker T. Washington High School, Houston ISD

Since 2006, The City of Houston’s Office of Education and the Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs successfully partnered with various organizations to sponsor citywide student art competitions. These competitions successfully raised awareness about Houston’s cultural vitality.

The Houston Arts Partners partnership was established by area school districts and community partners in 2009 with Young Audiences of Houston, a 501(c)3 organization as the managing partner and fiscal agent. Through this unique, collaborative partnership, the Houston Arts Partners members have positively impacted young lives in the region through their annual arts education conference and by establishing a network of local arts organizations and surrounding independent school districts.


In order to broaden the scope and raise the profile of this competition, the Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs, the Mayor’s Office of Education, and the Houston Arts Partners coalition will pilot a competition designed specifically for Houston area school districts and students. Houston Arts Partners will continue to coordinate and grow the city-wide scholarship with the expertise of district Fine Arts administrators after the close of the pilot.



The annual Mayor’s Art Scholarship Houston competition fosters collaboration among Houston-area high school fine arts departments and recognizes excellence in student art, which expresses cultural identities and features of life in Houston area neighborhoods.



  1. Provide a forum for self-expression and creative thinking in neighborhoods

  2. Recognize achievement and excellence in visual arts among high school students in the city

  3. Foster art as a means to strengthen relationships amongst students, communities and higher education.