TAP Proudly Presents
The 2007-2008 Essay Contest Winners!

The High School Division Essay Contest Winners:

First Place Prize: $200 U.S. Savings Bond

Gabriela Margarita De Jesus, New Haven, CT, Grade 11

Second Place Prize: $100 U.S. Savings Bond

Aniket Bhalchandra Nikumb, Mahrashtra, India

Honorable Mention

Zachary Baum, Grade 9, Paul J. Gelanas Jr. High School, East Setauket, NY

Katie Burke, Grade 12, Decorah High School, Decorah, IA

Melody Condon, Grade 11, Berthoud High School, Berthoud, CO

Ally Huang, Grade 12, Eastview High School, Apple Valley, MN

Rachel A Johnson, Grade 10, Mason Street School (Homeschooled), McClure, OH

Nicole Staton, Grade: 12, Millard North High School, Omaha, NE

Crystal Stone, Grade 9, Pottsgrove High School, Pottstown, PA

Jessica Tatar, Grade 12, Waubonsie Valley High School, Aurora, IL

Jordyn Wilson, Grade 12, Petoskey High School, Petoskey, MI

The High School Question:

France, Latvia and India have recently had elections. In 2007, Argentina, Pakistan, East Timor, Turkmenistan, South Korea, Slovenia, Kenya and other countries, are scheduled to hold elections. In 2008, the U.S., Russia, Paraguay, and the Republic of China (Taiwan), among others, are scheduled to hold elections.

Examine the way presidential and prime ministerial candidates are portrayed in the media. Does the media concentrate too much on a candidate being of a specific race, religion and/or gender and not enough on a candidate's perspective on the issues? How large a role does the media play and how great an impact does the media have, on who will be elected as the next President or Prime Minister of your country? In your essay, please state your own opinion on the role of the media in the electoral process and, if you think it needs to be changed, what you think can be done to improve the process.

The Middle School Division Essay Contest Winners:

First Place Prize: $200 U.S. Savings Bond

Morgan Sweere, Grade: 6, Ruth Doyle Intermediate School, Conway, AR

Second Place Prize: $100 U.S. Savings Bond (tie)

Alessandra Early, Grade 8, West Hills Middle School, West Bloomfield, MI

Naomi True, Grade 6, Lake Washington Girls Middle School, Seattle, Washington

Honorable Mention

Josh Breitman, Grade 8, West Hills Middle School, West Bloomfield, MI

Molly Hurd, Grade 6, International School of Beijing, Beijing, China

Chelsea Meagher, Grade 7, North Branford Intermediate School, North Branford, CT

Elizabeth Mydlowski, Grade 6, The Hun School of Princeton, Princeton, NJ

Vic Sun, Grade 6, West Hills Middle School, Bloomfield Hills, MI

The Middle School Question:

There are many movies and TV programs which demonstrate why it is important to value people for who they are rather than to judge them based solely on their race, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender, or disability. Other films and TV programs reinforce prejudice and stereotypes.

Write an essay showing how, in your opinion, a specific movie or TV program can be used at your school to raise awareness of prejudice and discrimination while teaching students to respect each other. Which movie or TV program would you recommend? Why do you believe this movie or TV program would impact the students who watch it? How do you think students might change their behavior, upon seeing this film or program, to be more accepting, appreciative and respectful of others?