By Mayra Castro
Winners of LBCC’s 2013 Jacaranda English Endowment Essay Contest were acknowledged in a reception in the LAC’s English Lounge on Tuesday, May 7.
Contestants applied to either the persuasive essay category or literature essay category.
Elizabeth Bay’s essay, “Perceptions of the Elegant Criminal,” won the persuasive essay contest.
Honorable mentions in the same category were given to Misty Marsh’s “Rotface and the Value of Our Gaming Avatars” and a tie between Jasmine Hunter’s “Racism: Manipulation in Moderation,” and Amanda Goodwin’s “The fight for Unequal Equal Rights.”
In the literature category, John Grossi and Ramon Lontok tied. Grossi won with his essay “The Gradual Corruption of Mankind” and Lontok with “Beyond Redemption: The Real Tragedy of Macbeth.”
Honorable mention under the literature category,Stephanie Cu evas, 20, a psychology major, said she was surprised to have been chosen as one of the entrants being recognized. “I didn’t even think I had a chance. It felt good to know that someone thought my paper was good enough to have an honorable mention,” Cuevas said.
Students were only allowed to apply to one category for the semester and had to be enrolled in an English course at LBCC. They submitted their essays at the end of the first week of classes of the semester following the class for which the paper was written. Essays had to be written for a general audience and had to be the original work of the entrants.
Head chair of this year’s contest, English instructor Anthony Starros said, “I am always impressed with the level of writing and effort that winning students put forth in their classes, and I am glad that we have this contest every year to reward such efforts.”
Although, the winning essays are now published on the English Department’s Website, in the past essays were available in print. Due to budget cuts, the costs of making a print version of the winning essays proved to be too difficult to maintain in the last few years, Starros said.
In past years, students have been able to submit essays in a third category, which was the expository category. Because only one person submitted an expository essay, the Jacaranda committee voted to suspend the category until next year, Starros said. A total of 17 submissions were received for all of the categories.
Winners under the categories received a check for $100, while honorable mentions were awarded $50. The money awarded was obtained through a grant from the LBCC foundation.
English instructor Nicole Glick, who served as one of the nine judges, said ties were awarded to candidates when the judges’ scores were tallied. She said, “Some essays are outright winners, while others are split decisions. The winners this year composed compelling arguments on really interesting topics.”