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Way to Go! Valley Stream student's film wins national award

Divya Dindial, a fourth-grader, won an Award of

Divya Dindial, a fourth-grader, won an Award of Excellence in this year's National PTA Reflections Contest. Credit: Valley Stream School District 30

A Valley Stream student's original film was one of only three submissions statewide — and the sole one from Long Island — to win an Award of Excellence in this year's National PTA Reflections Contest. 

Divya Dindial, a fourth-grader at Forest Road Elementary School in Valley Stream School District 30, won the award in the contest's film production category for her five-minute film, "Stories From Within."

For winning, she received a certificate, a silver medal and a $200 Young Artist Scholarship. Her work will also be featured in an online gallery and a traveling exhibit.

"I may not be the fastest runner, the best musician, or the best painter, but I believe in myself and I strive to be the best that I can be," Divya said in her winning video.

Divya's film outlines the obstacles overcome by her grandfather Patrick Dindial and by Patricia Lee, who is the director of Woodmere Music Studios. Her grandfather overcame a leg injury after being hit by a truck while riding his bicycle as a child, while Lee used music to help overcome the unexpected death of her father as a child.

The annual contest challenges students in grades kindergarten through 12 to create original works of art in the following categories: dance choreography, film production, literature, music competition, photography and visual arts. This year's theme was "Look Within."

— MICHAEL R. EBERT

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