Josie Chow (‘22) wins Gold Key at the Regional Scholastic Art and Writing Contest


Josie Chow

Josie Chow (‘22) stands holding her Gold Key award.

Inspired by her time at the Student Diversity Leadership Conference (SDLC), Josie Chow (‘22) decided to write a poemChingchangchong on the racism that Asian Americans face today. After submitting her work for the Regional Scholastic Art and Writing Contest, she was awarded the Gold Key, and will be advancing to the national competition.  

“I participated in SDLC and through talking a lot about diversity I guess it made me realize at first a lot about me,” Josie said. I was thinking I was going to learn about other people, but it really opened my eyes. They put you in the same [affinity] group. I was put into the Asian American group. I was learning a lot of information from other people about how the problems I am facing are not just a me problem, but other people are facing them as well.”  

Recently, with the rise of K-pop and beauty trends like the “fox eye,” Asian Americans have been pointing out that things they were once mocked for are now being fetishized.  

“I feel like more recently, I have noticed recently that people are focusing on trends that are a little bit racist,” Josie said. With Asian Americans people romanticize Asian culture without people realizing the context. 

Josie played with this theme through her poem.  

[In my poem,I was trying to juxtapose between the past and the present about how like at one time people might bully you for doing something and then at another time they will be doing the same actions as a trend,” Josie said. I wanted to compare between the two. I tried to make it rhyme a little bit because I like rhyming poems.  

After SDLC, Josie started writing her poems and submitting them to the Scholastic awards in December 2020. Josie’s poem “Ching, changchong” won, and her other poem received honorable mention.  

I feel like I want to put my voice out [there], Josie said. hadn’t really done anything to share my voice with the community and I thought what better way than to write a poem, which I had wanted to do for a while. That idea that I should share my voice really came through during the [SDLC] conference. The SDLC conference made me want to share who I am. I know I didn’t share my personal background, but the poem is all moments of time that I have experienced.  

Josie will be moving on to the National Scholastic Art and Writing Contest, where she has the opportunity to win a medal, and have her work displayed in The Best Teen Writing by The Alliance for Young Artists and Writers.