Student Illustrates Strong Message through Art

Cedric wins first place in preventative gambling contest

Cedric's ArtworkCedric Brown, a long time Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Atlanta (BGCMA) member who spent countless days at the Youth Art Connection (YAC), won first place in a contest sponsored by The Pathological Gambling Project and the social research lab at Georgia State University. In an acrylic drawing, Cedric illustrated gambling as a destructive influence. He learned about the contest through YAC.

As the winner, Cedric’s artwork will be on display on four billboards located throughout Georgia. In addition, he received a cash prize.

The Billboard Campaign on Youth Gambling Prevention was one strategy of the Pathological Gambling Project at Georgia State to prevent early onset of gambling problems among Georgia’s youth.

Cedric has been heavily involved in many of the Arts & Cultural Enrichment programs at BGCMA and YAC. He has been in numerous contests, won scholarships, held exhibitions and even traveled to China for an international art exhibit that corresponded with the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing.

“YAC was like a second home for me when I first joined,” said Brown. “Thursday evenings were the best days of the week for me. YAC has made a positive influence on my life. I thank God all the time for allowing me to find this organization.  The program has helped me meet a lot of people, exposed me to working with people from diverse backgrounds, and has allowed me to travel abroad. This program is unique because there is no other program that I know of that supports the arts like YAC does.”

"I have been amazed by Cedric's perseverance with his art,” said Rebecca DesMarais, Arts & Cultural Enrichment director at BGCMA. “He is certainly dedicated to it, and it is rewarding to see how he has responded to the advice and direction of his teachers and mentors. We at Youth Art Connection look for great accomplishments from Cedric."

Linden Longino, an arts & YAC enthusiast and BGCMA Board of Directors member, has been a mentor to Cedric over the years. Linden’s passion for the arts has been instrumental for BGCMA. He supports the Arts & Cultural Enrichment area for BGCMA, and has been active in the organization for 13 years. Through fundraising, hands-on training and networking, Linden has been a key leader for YAC. He organized, inspired and led the expedition to Beijing in 2008, where Cedric took his first plane ride overseas. Cedric trusts Linden as a friend, an advisor and a supporter.

Through YAC, Cedric has evolved as a person, an artist and a student. He is currently attending Georgia Perimeter College, majoring in Art with the ambition to transfer to Savannah College of Art & Design (SCAD) his junior year. He plans to be a fashion designer when he graduates.


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