2018 graduate students essay contest winners
The Freedom From Religion Foundation is proud to announce the 15 winners of the 2018 Brian Bolton Graduate/“Older” Student Essay Contest.
Graduate students were asked to write a personal persuasive essay about “The dangers of bibliolatry in the United States.”
FFRF has paid out a total of $10,450 in award money for this contest this year. This is the last of the 2018 essay competitions. FFRF awarded a record total of $46,750 to the student essayists this year among the four different competitions.
Winners are listed below and include the award amount and the college or university they will be attending.
Clayborne Cook, 26, University of Pittsburgh ($3,000)
Kelly Chen, 22, University of Alabama School of Medicine ($2,000)
Samuel Davidson, 22, California Institute of Technology ($1,000)
Tricity Andrew, 27, North Carolina State University ($750)
Jarred McCleese, 26, University of Kentucky ($600)
Garrett Dare, 28, University of Oregon ($500)
Nat Rogers, 24, Johns Hopkins University ($400)
Honorable mentions ($200 each)
Shelby Burton, 26, Touro University Nevada
Elizabeth Cullen, 29, Michigan State University
Meghan Fuller, 26, Purdue University Global
Andrew Haws, 31, University of Missouri-Kansas City
Richard Lyda, 30, Winthrop University
Ethan Morrow, 21, University of Missouri-Columbia
Ashley Podplesky, 28, University of
Elizabeth Ruelle, 28, College of Creative Studies
The graduate/“older” student contest is generously and singlehandedly endowed by Life Member Brian Bolton, a retired psychologist, humanist minister and professor emeritus at the University of Arkansas. The contest was open to graduate students up to age 30 or undergraduates ages 25-30 at the time of entry.
FFRF also thanks Dean and Dorea Schramm of Florida for providing a $100 bonus to students who are members of a secular student club or the Secular Student Alliance. The total reflects those bonuses.
FFRF has offered essay competitions to college students since 1979, high school students since 1994, graduate students since 2010 and since 2017 a contest geared specifically to students of color.