The Freedom From Religion Foundation has awarded $14,100 to 20 college-bound high school seniors in this year’s essay competition. Seniors were asked to write about the “The challenges of being a young freethinker” in 500 to 700 words. There are 10 winners in the top five, with ties for second, third and fifth place, and a three-way tie for fourth place. There are also 10 honorable mentions.
FFRF member William J. Schultz left a major bequest to generously endow this year’s contest. FFRF would also like to extend a special thanks to Dorea and Dean Schramm in Florida for providing each student with a $50 bonus.
First place ($3,000): Emily Stephens, Georgetown University.
Second place (tie, $2,000 each): Alexis Thomas, Ohio State University; Emma Conover-Crockett, Kenyon College.
Third place (tie, $1,000 each): Alex Kendig, University of California; Anna Cain, Colorado College.
Fourth place (tie, $500 each): Colin A. Muller, Columbia University; Sara Sheppard, Lone Star College; Taysie Savage, Oregon State University.
Fifth place (tie, $350 each): Kerry Foerst, University of North Carolina; Kamila Buscavage, Virginia Polytechnic.
Honorable mention ($250 each): Aaron McLaughlin, University of Iowa; Ayla Yener, McGill University; Darby Oldham, Swarthmore College; Gabriella Johnson, Stanford University; Lindsey Foster, Georgia State University;
Marianne Fuentes, University of Massachusetts; Meshulum Ort, Rutgers University; Nathan Hume Stevens, University of Oregon; Sarah Sprenger, Michigan State University; Zofia Warpeha, The New School, New York City.
The 2013 college essay and graduate/mature student essay winners will be announced in upcoming issues.
Read winning essays, pages 11–15.