Senior’s art wins second place in Thea Foundation competition

For the second year in a row, a Mount St. Mary Academy senior’s talent has been recognized by one of Thea Foundation’s annual scholarship competitions. Caroline Gunderman ’21 placed second and won a $3,500 scholarship in the nonprofit arts organization’s 2021 Visual Arts Scholarship Competition this month. Her winning artwork, a colorful painting titled Reflection, represents Caroline’s interpretation of this year’s competition theme: “What it means to be me.”


According to Thea Foundation, 126 Arkansas high school seniors entered this year’s Visual Arts Scholarship Competition. Only 10 students were selected as winners of scholarships ranging from $2,000 to $4,000. Livvie Falcon ’20 won the ninth place $2,000 scholarship in the same competition in 2020. Additionally, Sophie Mammarelli ’20 was awarded a $2,500 Editing Scholarship in last year’s Thea Foundation Film Scholarship Competition. At the end of its competitions this year, Thea Foundation will have awarded 472 scholarships for a total of approximately $2.5 million to Arkansas high school students.


“Caroline is one of those art students that you can count on to wow you with her work,” Jenny Holder, MSM art teacher, said. “She is exceptionally talented, yet is always open to guidance and to putting in the work. She absolutely deserves this scholarship.”


This isn’t the first time Caroline’s talent has been acknowledged and rewarded in a statewide competition. In May 2020, she was named the second place winner in Congressman French Hill’s Congressional Art Competition. A month earlier, she received Governor Asa Hutchinson’s top award – the Governor’s Award – in the Governor’s Young Artist Competition.


Congratulations to Caroline and all of this year’s Thea visual arts scholarship recipients!


Mount St. Mary Academy, sponsored by the Sisters of Mercy, develops young women with a moral and intellectual foundation rooted in Catholic tradition. Mercy-minded and college-prepared, our students meet the future with wisdom, compassion and integrity.