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Mesa high school student wins art competition; heads to D.C.

MESA, Ariz. (FOX 10) - A Mesa high school student uses her talents to spread a powerful message and because of this honor, she's now heading to Washington, D.C.

Junior Yennifer Macias Lopez has won a trip to the state capitol thanks to her photography. Lopez competed against more than 650,000 other high school students for state representative Greg Stanton's 2019 congressional art competition - and she won.

The winning photograph shows Lopez's little sister holding onto a parked train near Mesa Drive and Southern Avenue. Lopez said at first she was carelessly shooting until she realized there was a deeper meaning to the image. Her message? To depict the trials migrants face for a chance at a better life.

"We really don't know the struggle a lot of the time from relatives," Lopez said. "There's a lot of laws still that would make it hard for immigrants to come and them knowing that and them still wanting to come over here just tells us how desperate they are for a tiny chance to get a better life- that's why I named this A Better Life."

Lopez's photograph will be hung at the US State Capitol for a year and soon she'll be able to see it for herself.