More Than $4,000 Awarded in FFRF High School Scholarships

The Freedom From Religion Foundation is awarding $4,100 in cash scholarships to winners of its annual essay competition for college-bound high school grads.

In light of last year’s landmark decision on intelligent design” in Dover, Penn., the Foundation asked high school seniors in this year’s competition to write on the timely topic of “Why Creationism (Intelligent Design) Should Not Be Taught in Public Schools.”

The winning essayist, Mara Wishingrad, of New York, wrote on “The First Amendment v. Fundamentalism.” She received the Blanche Fearn Memorial Award of $2,000, to help toward her expenses at the University of Pennsylvania this fall.

The second-place winner, Anupama Pattabiraman, of New Jersey, received $1,000 for her essay, “Design’s ‘Uniformity’ vs. Evolution’s Evidence.” She will be attending Princeton.

Third-place winner Eitan Horwitz, of New York, received $500 for his essay, “The Name Game: How Creationism Became Intelligent Design and Why It Should Not be Taught in Classrooms.” He will be attending the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

All three top essays are reprinted in this issue.

The Foundation, noting it received many fine essays, also awarded six “Honorable Mentions,” granting $100 cash scholarships each to:

Jonathan Cross, of Tennessee, who wrote on “Behind Intelligent Design: Christian Apologetics and the ‘Science’ that Isn’t.” He will be attending Harvard.

Paul Ginart, of Georgia, who wrote on “A Step Backwards.” He will be attending Princeton University.

Andrew Payne, of California, who wrote an essay called “Fish Out of Water.” He will be attending the University of California-Berkeley.

Elvia Pyburn-Wilk, of Indiana, whose essay was titled, “Intelligent Design vs. Intelligent Education.” She will be attending Bard College.

Jill Marcellus, of New York, called her essay, “Of Pandas and Panderers: The Risks of Appeasing the Religious Right in the Intelligent Design Controversy.” She will be attending Barnard.

Alexander Orion Anthony, of Connecticut, wrote about “An Inquiry into Intelligent Design Education.” He will be attending Wesleyan University.

The “Honorable Mention” essays will be published in future issues. All other eligible entrants in the high school competition were offered either a complimentary freethought book or a subscription to Freethought Today for entering. Next year’s guidelines will be announced in February 2007.

Winners of the annual college competition will be announced in September.

Freedom From Religion Foundation