Local students win UA’s ‘Mockingbird’ essay contest
Published 12:42 pm Monday, February 8, 2016
By NEAL WAGNER / Managing Editor
TUSCALOOSA – Students from several local high schools earned honors and cash prizes during a recent ceremony at the University of Alabama after they penned award-winning essays on a popular novel.
Over the past few months, UA’s College of Communication and Information Sciences has hosted the university’s 15th annual “To Kill a Mockingbird” essay contest. Through the contest, the college accepted essay submissions from high schools across the state, and each school selected a winner.
All school winners were honored during a Feb. 5 awards luncheon in UA’s Ferguson Center Ballroom, which featured keynote speaker Rick Bragg, a professor in UA’s journalism department and Pulitzer Prize winner.
During the contest, which began in 2001 to honor “To Kill a Mockingbird” author Harper Lee’s induction in the Alabama Academy of Honor, participants were required to write a 500-750-word essay detailing how the book is still relevant to readers in today’s society.
The following Shelby County students were named essay winners at their schools, and were honored during the Feb. 5 luncheon:
-Betty Araya, Chelsea High School
-Lauren Choi, Spain Park High School
-Mary Brook Diamond, Evangel Christian School in Alabaster
-Mary Grace Long, Evangel Classical Christian School in Alabaster
-Amanda Vick, Shelby County High School
Sponsors of this years contest were University Libraries, the Alabama Center for the Book, Academic Affairs, the College of Arts and Sciences, the Office of Undergraduate Admissions, Alabama Heritage, the Alabama Press Association, the Alabama Alumni Association, Early College, the College of Education, New College and the Honors College.