Students Shine at ACT-SO Competition

Eight Local high school students placed first in various categories in the 2015 ACT-SO (Afro-American, Cultural, technological and Scientific Olympics) on Saturday, 25 April (pictured above from left to right with ACT-SO Chairman, Arthur L. Blakely and ACT-SO Vice Chairman, Roy R. Corlew):

  • Kristina Taylor, Fort Walton Beach HS: Film-making
  • Jasmine O’Neal, Fort Walton Beach HS: Music/Vocal/Contemporary
  • Juwan Gaines, Fort Walton Beach HS: Poetry Performance
  • Jessica Shouse, Choctawhatchee HS: Sculpture
  • LaNell Edwards, Fort Walton Beach HS: Dramatics (and Third Place, Written Poetry)
  • Jasmine Scaife, Choctawhatchee HS: Dance
  • Amber Lunderman, Choctawhatchee HS: Photography (and Second Place in Art Painting)
  • Tyla Lane-Scott, Fort Walton Beach HS: Oratory

ACT-SO is a major youth outreach project of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).  It was founded in 1978 by the renowned author and journalist, Vernon Jarrett.  ACT-SO was designed to be a year-long enrichment program that provides role models, encouragement, and guidance for the student whose skills and talents may go undeveloped or overlooked.  ACT-SO builds self-esteem and develops a sense of self-worth within African-American students by challenging their ability to succeed in a competitive and technical environment.

The ACT-SO competition is divided into disciplines of science, humanities, performing arts and visual arts. Scoring was based on a point system, where students were not just scored and ranked, but had to score in a specific range to qualify for placement.

The first three place winners are awarded gold, silver, and bronze medals.  First place winners also will compete at the National Competition in Philadelphia, PA in July 2015.

For more information on ACT-SO, please visit: