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2019 John Sexton Essay Contest

Committee:

Adem Carroll.webp

Adem Carroll
United Nations & New York Program Director,
Burma Task Force

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Jesse Corburn
Assistant Superintendent,
Uncommon Collegiate Charter
High School

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Chaumtoli Huq
Associate Professor of Law,
CUNY School of Law

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Shakil Ahmed
Founder & CEO,
Princeton Alpha Management LP

Peter Wilson.webp

Peter Wilson
Musician & College Advisor,
Baccalaureate School for
Global Education

Sean_Gavin.webp

Sean Gavin
Principal,
Uncommon Leadership
Charter High School

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Ting Yu
Founder & Editor-in-chief,
One Day Magazine

Winners:

1st Place

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Anab Khan
Baccalaureate School for Global Education,
11th Grade

2nd Place

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Jason Tan
Brooklyn Technical High School,
12th Grade

3rd Place

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Yiting (Kelly) Su
Brooklyn Technical High School,
11th Grade

Honorable Mentions:

Zubaidah Chowdhury JSSP 2019

Zubaidah Chowdhury
Fiorello H. Laguardia High School,
12th Grade

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Kevin Ping-An Tang
Ridge High School (NJ),
11th Grade

The John Sexton Scholars Program invited all currently enrolled NYC, Long Island, New Jersey and Connecticut high school students to participate in the 2019 John Sexton Essay Contest. The competition challenged students to write an original and creative essay for the following prompt:

In a New York Times article, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet stated that “returning Rohingya refugees to Myanmar at this point effectively means throwing them back into the cycle of human rights violations that this community has been suffering for decades.” Explain at least two measures that should be taken by Myanmar or the international community to ensure that the conditions in Myanmar will not continue this cycle of violations upon the Rohingya’s return.

Rules & Rubric

Who May Enter

All currently enrolled NYC, Long Island, New Jersey and Connecticut high school students (grades 9-12).

How to Submit An Essay

  • Essays must be submitted electronically via email to essay@riseforrohingya.org no later than 11:59 pm EST on April 25, 2019.

  • Essays must include a cover sheet with the following information: (1) name and address; (2) email address; (3) name of currently enrolled high school; (4) current grade level.

  • Essays must be submitted double-spaced in a PDF document. 

  • Only one entry per student may be submitted. 

Essay Requirements

​​

  • Essay must be no more than 500 words in length and double-spaced.

  • Essays must use at least three varied sources such as newspaper articles, books, letters, and/or YouTube videos. Sources must be documented with citations and a bibliography.

Plagiarism

The Essay must be solely the work of the entrant. Plagiarism will result in disqualification. Essays must not infringe on any third-party rights or intellectual property of any person, company or organization.

Awards

1st Place Winner: will receive a $500 Visa gift card, a plaque from John Sexton at our event, and will have their essay posted on our website. (Sponsored by the Burma Task Force)

2nd Place Winner: will receive a $300 Visa gift card, a plaque from John Sexton at our event, and will have their essay posted on our website. (Sponsored by John Sexton Scholars Program Team)

3rd Place Winner: will receive a $200 Visa gift card, a plaque from John Sexton at our event, and will have their essay posted on our website. (Sponsored by Rakan Shafi)

Two Honorable Mentions: will each receive a $50 Visa gift card, a plaque from John Sexton, and will have their essay posted on our website. (Sponsored by Burma Task Force)

Winners will be notified and invited to our event via email by June 15, 2019.

Judging Criteria

Content will count for 75% and the following parameters will be considered:

  1. Focus: Insightfully develops a thesis on the topic

  2. Supporting Evidence: critical analysis of the question, well-researched, and convincing arguments with specific examples

  3. Source Material: bibliography of three or more varied sources

 

Presentation will count for 25% and the following parameters will be considered:

  1. Quality of Writing: clarity, flow, vocabulary, and style

  2. Organization: introduction, conclusion, and structure,

  3. Conventions: spelling, grammar, syntax, and punctuation

Resources

 

The following links are recommended to improve your essay content:​

  1. ​Please watch the following interview before working on your essay: Kwame Anthony Appiah on the Rohingya Crisis (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9GW6b_ATfyc)

  2. Purdue Online Writing Lab is an online writing center which provides free writing and instructional handouts: (https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/747/01/)

  3. Please follow our Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook page for tips and advice on how to approach the essay.

Disclaimers

  • The John Sexton Scholars Program reserves the right to print and display the essays and photographs of the contest winners.

  • Previous year winners are not eligible to compete in the contest.

  • All entries become the property of the John Sexton Scholars Program and will not be returned.

  • Decisions of the John Sexton Essay Contest Committee are final.

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