Christopher Shen is a junior attending Princeton High School in Princeton, New Jersey. He is an active part and leader of his school’s Speech & Debate team, newspaper, Euro Challenge economics team, and more. Christopher has been debating nationally since his freshman year and is the Head Captain of the Speech and Debate team. He placed first in the state of New Jersey, championed both the UPenn and Ridge national tournaments as a junior, and has accumulated four career bids to the Tournament of Champions. In addition, Christopher is captain of the Euro Challenge team, helping bring Princeton High School to a first-place win in the 2019 National Euro Challenge Competition and a second-place win in 2020. He is particularly interested in economics and its intersections with other disciplines. Christopher works as Managing Editor for his school’s award-winning newspaper, where he frequents the Opinions section. He also leads his school’s community service program, organizing educational initiatives and tutoring peers. Christopher plays competitive golf and has been a varsity player since his freshman year.

The Governor’s Awards in Arts Education began in 1980 to promote awareness and appreciation of the arts, recognizing the creativity, talent and leadership of the award winners. Each year, awards are presented to approximately 20 educators and 80 students. National and statewide organizations select the students for their exemplary work in creative writing, speech, dance, music, theatre and visual arts and the leaders for their exceptional commitment and contribution to arts education. The program also recognizes arts educators and arts education advocates, whose leadership has helped nurture the development of students in the arts across the state.

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The Governor’s Awards event is a partnership of the Arts Ed NJ, the Department of Education, Art Pride New Jersey Foundation, the Department of State and the New Jersey State Council on the Arts. Additional support is provided by: the Afro-Academic, Cultural, Technological and Scientific Olympics; Art Educators of New Jersey; Art Administrators of New Jersey; Dance New Jersey; New Jersey Council of Teachers of English; New Jersey Speech and Debate League; New Jersey Music Educators Association; New Jersey Performing Arts Center; Writer's Theatre of New Jersey; Speech and Theatre Association of New Jersey; New Jersey Thespians and Young Audiences of New Jersey and Eastern Pennsylvania. The cooperating organizations, award sponsors and individual members of the planning council dedicate their time to make sure that excellence in the arts is rewarded, and work tirelessly throughout the year to plan this special event. The Governor's Awards in Arts Education ceremony are a major collaborative effort of the arts, education and state government.