Two Rock Springs Seniors Awarded Art Scholarships

Two Rock Springs Seniors Awarded Art Scholarships

Rhys Brant, a senior at Rock Springs High School, has been awarded the very first Community Fine Arts Center Art Scholarship. Along with lettering in Art, Brandt received letters in three athletic divisions.

ROCK SPRINGS– The Community Fine Arts Center Advisory Board is proud to announce their selection for the very first CFAC Arts Scholarship.

The scholarship, announced earlier in the spring, is available to any Sweetwater County School District No. 1 senior who has focused on visual art classes through their high school career and will be continuing their studies in Wyoming.

The board met in regular session in April and selected Rhys Brandt from Rock Springs High School. Brandt received a letter in Art and also several blue ribbons at Wyoming’s State Art Conferences the last two years. Along with a love of art, Brandt also excelled in athletics including track, basketball and volleyball in which she won numerous awards and honors. Maintaining a 4.0 GPA, Brandt is a National Honor Society member and served on the Student Council.

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The $500 scholarship was matched by former RSHS graduate Dr. Jay Bachicha for a total of $1,000 to be used in furthering Brandt’s education at a Wyoming secondary institution. Bachicha, an inductee in the RSHS Hall of Fame, was enthusiastic to support this new scholarship opportunity and to give back to his hometown. Brandt is planning to attend Western Wyoming Community College in the fall.

While reviewing the applications the CFAC board members decided in light of these unusual and trying times, they would like to extend their support to a second student.

This additional scholarship in the amount of $500 is being awarded to Kaitlyn Duran, a graduate from Black Butte High School. Duran is a dedicated student, focusing on art since her first class in junior high school.

A second place CFAC scholarship was added to recognize Black Butte High School senior Kaitlyn Duran. Here Kaitlyn is showing her watercolor and ink portrait of her sister.

A special mural project completed during her junior year at BBHS has a panel she created. She also participated in Sweetwater County Young Authors the last two years and received first place in the fiction division this year. Duran is also attending Western Wyoming Community College this fall.

“I was excited to see such wonderful artwork for the inaugural year of this scholarship program,” said RJ Pieper, CFAC Advisory Board Chairman. “Both recipients were well deserved, and as a fellow artist, I hope to see how they grow their artistic talents as they walk through life. On behalf of the board, we are proud to help them achieve everything they can dream of.”

The CFAC Board members are RJ Pieper, chair; Angela Thatcher, vice-chair; Breanna Jackman, secretary; Nathan Wonnacott, treasurer; Carol Jelaco, Sweetwater County School District No. 1 board chair; Susie von Ahrens, Anthony Boaten, and Hank Ketelsen. Members of the board are appointed by the three entities that support the CFAC — Sweetwater County Commissioners, the City of Rock Springs and Sweetwater County School District No. 1.

The CFAC functions as a department of the Sweetwater County Library System.

For more information about the CFAC, visit or email the center at Watch for reopening information to be announced with the Sweetwater County Library System.