E-Net News

Thomas Jefferson essay contest winners named

Three winners of the Philip L. Carret "Thomas Jefferson Essay Competition" were named April 25.

2013 Thomas Jefferson Essay Competition winners included (l-r) Avery McGaha, Rob Shapiro and Laura Orr.

Students Avery McGaha, Rob Shapiro and Laura Orr have been selected as winners in the 2013 Philip L. Carret "Thomas Jefferson Essay Competition."

Seven students entering this year's competition, wrote on the following topic:

The American value of individualism arose, in part, from Americans’ encounters with western lands, including those Jefferson acquired through the Louisiana Purchase and commissioned Lewis and Clark to explore. How have Jefferson’s philosophy and practices shaped your generation’s perspective on social and cultural life in the U.S. today—including your ideas about American individualism?

First Place
Avery McGaha
Pisgah Forest, N.C.
Junior (Major: Environmental Studies)

McGaha's essay, " Storms in the West: Thomas Jefferson’s Legacy in the Fight to Preserve Earth’s Climate," won the $1,000 top prize. He will also receive an all-expenses-paid visit to Thomas Jefferson's home at Monticello, Va.

Second Place
Rob Shapiro
Hillsborough, N.C.
Senior (Major:
English with concentrations in creative writing and literature)

Shapiro's essay, "Exploration of Self: The Dialectic American Individual," won the $500 second place award.

Third Place
Laura Orr
Topsail Beach, N.C.
Freshman (Undecided major)

Orr's essay, "A Dream for the Future: American Individualism Through Jefferson’s History of the Past," received the $100 third place award.

The papers submitted for this year's competition were read and evaluated by Elon faculty members Cassie Kircher, Samuele Pardini, and Clyde Ellis.

The Philip L. Carret "Thomas Jefferson Essay Competition" is an endowed essay contest created in 1997 when Carret, a longtime New York investor, fell in love with Elon University after a visit to campus the previous year. Carret promoted the contest to have students reflect on the ideals and principles embodied in Thomas Jefferson's life and career.

Dan Anderson,
4/26/2013 9:15 AM