Awesome Essays Worth $529 for College
Twenty-four local students have written a new chapter into the 35th annual Awesome 3000. The Salem-Keizer Education Foundation has announced the winners of the third annual Why College is Awesome essay contest. Sponsored by the Oregon College Savings Plan, the essay winners each receive a $529 Oregon College Savings Plan account.
Read and scored by a committee of literacy and writing professionals, 362 students submitted entries including 119 elementary students from 14 schools, 98 middle school students from 11 schools and 145 students from 6 high schools. Students were asked to paint a mental picture with drawings and/or words, keep the reader interested, and give a creative, and succinct expression of why going to college is an awesome experience.
The essays discussed a wide variety of topics, including everything from the college experience, to working for their dream careers, to being the first person in their family to obtain a college education.
Cathy McInnis, College and Career Specialist for the Salem-Keizer School District, served as a scorer on the committee. After reading dozens of essays, she spoke of the importance of having this sort of contest for younger students.
“It’s so important to plant that seed early,” she said. “They’re sharing their vision of Why College is Awesome.”
As a scorer, McInnis said she’s looking for essays that set students apart.
“Tell me your story. I look for that story that has some meaning to it.”
Why College is Awesome Essay Contest Winners for 2017
Luke Neria – Lee Elementary
Janet Chen – Candalaria Elementary
Moriah Donahue – Pringle Elementary
Chloe Nitti – Sumpter Elementary
Bella Nitti – Sumpter Elementary
Harrison Buckingham – McKinley Elementary
Jamie Chen – Candalaria Elementary
Sawyer Nelson – McKinley Elementary
Aiden Dudley – Washington Elementary
Serenity Gay – Cummings Elementary
Sadie Paterson – Schirle Elementary
Eliora Yamoah – Schirle Elementary
Kaylan Ma – Judson Middle School
Jordan Cook – Straub Middle School
Isabella Wunderlich – Leslie Middle School
Alika Wolf – Crossler Middle School
Victoria Canchola – Early College High School
Kylie McNeely – McNary High School
Hailey Tipton – West Salem High School
Angel Olmos – McNary High School
Angelica Mejia – Sprague High School
Brendon Ma – South Salem High School
Rylie Tiffin – South Salem High School
Sadie Hayes – South Salem High School