Programs & Courses
Financial Aid

Student from Yukon receives NWCC President's Award for Thunder Spirit


News Release 

May 9, 2016

Terrace, BC –  First year student Violet Gatensby of the Freda Diesing School of Northwest Coast Art at Northwest Community College (NWCC), received this year’s President’s Award. Her painting Thunder Spirit, will be reproduced in a limited print run. It will be given as gifts to dignitaries visiting NWCC and to employees celebrating major milestones. The President’s Award gives emerging artists a financial scholarship and wider exposure for their work.

 “I’m very excited about winning this award,” said Gatensby, Inland Tlingit, from Carcross Yukon. “My designs are sharper from practicing my skills in the First Nations Fine Arts program. It’s my favourite design so it’s nice that more people will get to see it.”

Sto:lo nation member, Amanda Hugon won Honourable Mention for her painting Eye in the Sky.

“I really wasn’t expecting to win an award,” said Hugon. “This is the first crest design that I’ve created. This will be my motivation to do more designs.”

“We've got some tremendously talented students in our Freda Diesing Northwest Coast Art program,” said NWCC President Ken Burt, "This year the quality of the artwork was consistently very high across the class. The excellence of the entries made choosing a winner challenging and that’s a great problem to have.”

Northwest Community College created the Freda Diesing School of Northwest Coast Art to honour, recognize and continue the legacy of Haida artist Freda Diesing. She was a master carver, painter, tireless educator and champion of First Nations art and culture. The Freda Diesing School of Northwest Coast Art sets new standards for aspiring artists. It is the only School of its kind in Canada, focusing on traditional First Nations Pacific Northwest Coast art, with the view of developing skills into fine art.

For more information on the program visit:



Current News Story 
« Back to All News Articles