Anti-Violence Academic Program Awards Essay Winners

Anti-Violence Academic Program Awards Essay Winners

Violence in Chicago is increasingly affecting the lives and communities of its youth. One outlet for young people to express themselves and suggest solutions to address youth violence is through the writing program and essay contest, Do the Write Thing.

A previous post on School Zone explained the program which has culminated for this school year and chosen the essay contest winners.

More than 1,000 essays by middle school children from approximately 30 schools were sent to the 15th annual Chicago Do the Write Thing city-wide writing contest. Teens were asked to write an original essay, poem, fictional story, or play in order to be chosen to represent their school at an awards banquet for 100 winners.

On Tuesday, May 7, 2013, the annual awards ceremony took place at the UIC Student Services Center to honor the top 100 student writers. Ten finalists received a trophy and two winners achieved the status of ambassadors. Congratulations to student winners (pictured above) Daniel Seavers, an 8th Grade student from Williams Preparatory Academy and Sydney Cusic, an 8th Grade student from St. John de la Salle Catholic Academy. Ambassadors and their teachers, Nayram Adadevoh (Williams Preparatory Academy) and Jennifer Jurasits (St. John de la Salle Catholic Academy) will attend the national Do the Write Thing summit in Washington, DC.

Do the Write Thing is a youth anti-violence academic program designed for 6-8th graders. Delivered at school, it can be presented as part of a writing curriculum or social studies course. Middle school students are encouraged to examine the impact that youth violence has played in their lives. Students are given a voice as to what they think should be done to reduce youth violence through classroom discussions. They are encouraged to make a commitment to do something about this issue.

More information on Chicago Do the Write Thing is available here.


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    My name is Lisa Stiegman and I have been a Chicago area resident all my life. Besides being the mother of three children, I have been a writer, editor, and teacher.

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