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 Oceanside High Freshman Captures Spirit of San Diego for U.S. Capitol


Oceanside High School freshman Juan Pablo Garcia was selected as first place prize winner of 49th District Rep. Mike Levin's Congressional Art Competition, earning a cash prize, a trip to Washington, D.C., and the honor of having his art hung for one year in the United States Capitol Building.

Garcia's photo, "Sunset at the San Diego County Fair," is a tribute to this historical local event that had to be canceled in the midst of COVID-19. Competition judge Maria Mingalone, Executive Director of the Oceanside Museum of Art, said the photo "captured the spirit of our region" and will proudly represent SoCal in Washington.

The competition received 32 submissions assessed on "mastery of the medium, creative expression, and also the quality of the presentation," Mingalone said.

Garcia took this winning photo over summer, and worked with his teacher on editing and writing a submission after they found out that the competition was still continuing this year. Garcia is in the Arts, Digital Media and Design Career Pathway at OHS, where students work with industry-standard cameras, software, and equipment.

"Our career technical teachers are ones that connect our students with real-world opportunities," OHS Principal Teresa Collis said. "You never know where it will take them or where it will lead."

Garcia is planning a trip to Washington, D.C., for later this summer, where he will get to see his artwork hung in the Capitol.

You can see the full gallery of this year's submissions online.