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Oak Ridge students to receive awards for artwork & poetry in honor of Oak Ridge 85

More than 100 students created works of art and poems to remember the historic integration of Oak Ridge Public Schools more than 65 years ago.

OAK RIDGE, Tenn. — On Thursday, students in Oak Ridge will receive awards for their talent and participation in a district wide art and poetry contest. 

The awards ceremony will take place at the Children's Museum of Oak Ridge at 5 p.m.

From haikus to black and white drawings, their work honors the legacy of the Oak Ridge 85, the first students to integrate a public school system in Tennessee.

RELATED: The Secret in Scarboro: The Oak Ridge 85

More than 100 students created works of art and poems to remember the historic integration of Oak Ridge Public Schools more than 65 years ago.

"For some of the African American students it made them feel proud. And they spoke about that in their poems," said Rhea Carmon, Knoxville's Poet Laureate and Oak Ridge teacher. "For other students it made them excited that Oak Ridge was the first and they they could have something positive to take from what some could say was a very negative part of our country."

Y-12 National Security Complex is also sponsoring the Oak Ridge Student Art and Poetry Competition.

Each student who participated will take home a commemorative book of the submissions to keep.

You can check out their artwork at the Children's Museum until March 30.