Washington, — Claire Chamberlin from Fairhope High School has won a $1,000 college scholarship for writing the best essay from Alabama in this year’s National Peace Essay Contest, sponsored by the United States Institute of Peace (USIP). Claire …
Washington, — Claire Chamberlin from Fairhope High School has won a $1,000 college scholarship for writing the best essay from Alabama in this year’s National Peace Essay Contest, sponsored by the United States Institute of Peace (USIP). Claire will be invited to join other state winners on an all-expenses-paid trip to Washington, D.C., to participate in a weeklong education program focusing on international conflict resolution and compete for national scholarship awards up to $10,000.
This is the 20th year that USIP has sponsored the National Peace Essay Contest, which addresses a different issue of war and peace selected by the Institute’s board of directors each year. This year, approximately 4,000 students from around the U.S., including U.S. territories and American students living abroad, researched and wrote essays on the topic of “Youth and Violent Conflict.” Claire’s essay entry, entitled “Youth in Conflict,” was coordinated by Karen C. Myrick.
“Every year, my colleagues and I are deeply impressed by the level of effort and dedication that high school students display in their essays about complex international issues,” said USIP president Dr. Richard H. Solomon. “Our hope is that today’s essay contest winners will be tomorrow’s peacebuilders.”
Essays are judged by an independent panel of educators on the content of the student’s ideas, the analysis of researched facts and opinions and the clarity and organization of their expression. State winners, including Claire, are invited to come to Washington, D.C., from June 17-22 this year to participate in a conflict resolution simulation where they will assume the roles of citizens, government officials and members of international and non-governmental organizations to solve international problems. They will also meet with government and embassy officials, Members of Congress and their staff and other practitioners whose work is relevant to international conflict management and resolution. At a banquet at the end of the week held at the Embassy of Sweden, the national, first-, second- and third-place contest winners will be announced, each of whom will earn scholarship prizes of $10,000, $5,000 and $2,500, respectively.
USIP’s National Peace Essay Contest increases student awareness of international peace and conflict resolution. It is a program open to all American high school students. The 2007-08 topic is “Natural Resources and Conflict.” Students can download a study guide and competition application at www.usip.org. While this year’s contest winners are in Washington, D.C., USIP will post daily updates documenting their experience at www.usip.org.
The United States Institute of Peace is an independent, nonpartisan, national institution established and funded by Congress. Its goals are to help manage and resolve international conflicts, promote post-conflict stability and development, and increase peacebuilding capacity, tools, and intellectual capital worldwide. The Institute does this by empowering others with knowledge, skills, and resources, as well as by directly engaging in peacebuilding efforts around the globe.