Fairchild Challenge at Phipps: Challenge #2 Winners Announced!
Dec 28

Fairchild Challenge at Phipps: Challenge #2 Winners Announced!

By Emily Nye, High School Program Coordinator

Thank you to everyone who participated in our latest visual art challenge, “Petals & Pollinators”! Wow! We cannot wait to cover the walls in Phipps’ Center for Sustainable Landscapes with some of the beautiful botanical artwork from the latest challenge. As usual, the research and science education staff was blown away by the level of creativity displayed in these works of art.

In this challenge, we tasked students with creating either a 3-D model (middle school) or a multimedia piece (high school) depicting a fictional flower based on its co-evolution with a specific pollinator. The winning entries were thoughtfully and beautifully crafted; clearly labeled with scientifically accurate plant parts; and inventive with their co-evolved flower and pollinator traits.

We will be sending a selection of the entries to the Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden in Miami, Florida for the Global Showcase which highlights entries from all of the Fairchild Challenge partners. We encourage you to preview a selection of the middle school and high school entries submitted to Phipps. 

And the winners are:

Middle School

First: Bree Boyd, Isabele Concepcion, Mia Damico, Alicia Matthews, Briana Nesbitt, Max Onder and Alex Shimenko, Woodland Hills Academy

Fairchild Challenge

Second: Lucy Elston, Helena Marshall, Zoe Painter, Ivan Remaley, Nathan Scott and Zoe Spear, Woodland Hills Academy

Third: Layla, Delilah, Luke, Graham, Sophie, Justice and Olivia, Western Pennsylvania School for Blind Children

Special Merit:

Sophia Green, Mackenzie Keenan, Emma Edwards and Natalie Goldsworthy, Penn Middle School

Gigi Emahizer and Tali Brobst, Trafford Middle School

Brianna Elias, Trafford Middle School

Katerina Saxon, Ava Campman, Sydney Avant and  Avery O’Sullivan, Trinity Middle School

View a selection of additional entries.

High School

First: Elsie Carter, Will Carter, Madison Kapisak, Sydney Knicely and Jenna Mervosh, Elizabeth Forward High School

Second: Emma Chichilla, Madison Kober, Brianna Stephans, Kate Polechko, Zoe Smith and Alex Wargo, Penn-Trafford High School

Third: Emily Ehrenberger, Shaler Area High School

Special Merit:

P.J. Squire, Shaler Area High School

Caden Ferita, Westinghouse Arts Academy Charter School

Special Merit (Research):

Shannon Byrnes, South Park High School

View a selection of additional entries.

We would like to give a special shout out to our panelists: Joanne Schreiber (Phipps volunteer), Dr. Donna Beer Stolz (University of Pittsburgh), Robin Menard (botanical artist), Chris Holt (Phipps volunteer), Jennifer Davit (Phipps Curator of Horticulture) and Melissa Fabian (botanical artist and owner of Wild Rose Landscape Design, LLC). Thank you for lending us your expertise!

Have questions? Contact Emily Nye at enye@phipps.conservatory.org or 412/622-6915, ext. 3905.

Developed by the Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden in Miami, Fl., and adopted by Phipps as a satellite partner in 2008, The Fairchild Challenge offers a menu of interdisciplinary challenges for grades 6 – 8 and 9 – 12, attracting students of diverse interests, abilities, talents and backgrounds. The Challenge empowers young people to engage in civic life and encourages them to become energetic and knowledgeable members of their communities.

Header artwork © Caden Ferita; Main blog image artwork © Lucy Elston, Helena Marshall, Zoe Painter, Ivan Remaley, Nathan Scott, Zoe Spear


Such creative work! Congratulations to all the students who participated in this year’s Fairchild Challenge.

Amy Padolf
Director of Education
Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden
Coral Gables, FL
@APadolf @FairchdChallnge

By Amy Padolf on Jan 5, 2018