National Endowment for the Humanities, Washington, D.C., 2 October 2006, Humanities Endowment to name grand prize winner Nov. 6 at Supreme Court event
The four winners of the 2006 “Idea of America” Essay Contest (listed alphabetically) are Sean Frazier, 17, of Montauk, N.Y.; Sang “Bill” Jung, 17, of Rochester Hills, Mich.; Elise Liu, 17, of Pittsburgh, Pa.; and Anna Pritt, 17, of Walkersville, Md. Each winner will receive a prize of $1,000 and attend a national awards ceremony and dinner held Nov. 6 at the Supreme Court. Hosted by NEH, the ceremony will feature the presentation of medals to the four winners in honor of their achievement and the designation of one of the four students as the grand prize winner, who will receive a total prize of $5,000.
NEH news release, 3 October 2006, Pennsylvania student is winner in national Idea of America Essay Contest NEH will honor Elise Liu at Supreme Court ceremony
The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) announced today that home schooled Elise Liu, 17, of Pittsburgh, Pa., is one of four winners in the nationwideÂ Idea of AmericaÂ Essay Contest for high school juniors.Â The contest was held as a part of NEH’s We the People program, launched by President Bush in 2002 to support strengthening the study, teaching, and understanding of American history and culture.
Each of the four winners will receive a prize of $1,000 and attend a national awards ceremony dinner to be held Nov. 6 at the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington, D.C. Hosted by NEH, the ceremony will feature the presentation of medals to the four winners in honor of their achievement and the designation of one of the four students as the grand prize winner, who will receive an additional $4,000.
“The core tenet of our We the People initiative is that a knowledge of America’s history and founding principles is vital to both active citizenship and a robust democracy,” said National Endowment for the Humanities Chairman Bruce Cole, “Elise demonstrated an exceptional understanding of historical deliberations on the First Amendment, as well as how the Amendment impacts our nation today.Â I congratulate each writer on their engagement in the ongoing study of our American ideals, and I look forward to discussing their thoughts in greater depth when we meet in Washington.”
The young essayists wrote about the historical debate our founders had over the benefits and disadvantages of adopting the First Amendment to the Constitution, and they explained, in 1,500 words, whether the freedoms named in the First Amendment are fundamental to the functioning of our democracy.
The 2006 contest drew entries from more than 1,700 11th-grade public, private, and home-schooled students across the nation. Essays were first evaluated by 16 history teachers. Those essays with the highest scores were then reviewed by staff at the McCormick Tribune Freedom Museum in Chicago and by members of the National Council on the Humanities who recommended finalists to NEH Chairman Bruce Cole. The Chairman made the final selections.
The National Endowment for the Humanities gratefully acknowledges the generous support provided by the McCormick Tribune Foundation in Chicago for the Endowment’s We the People initiative.
Created in 1965 as an independent federal agency, the National Endowment for the Humanities supports learning in history, literature, philosophy, and other areas of the humanities. NEH grants enrich classroom learning, create and preserve knowledge, and bring ideas to life through public television, radio, new technologies, museum exhibitions, and programs in libraries and other community places.