Seal of the  State of Connecticut, Office of the State Comptroller

STATE OF CONNECTICUT

NANCY WYMAN
COMPTROLLER

OFFICE OF THE STATE COMPTROLLER
55 ELM STREET
HARTFORD, CONNECTICUT 06106-1775

MARK OJAKIAN
DEPUTY COMPTROLLER

WYMAN ANNOUNCES WINNERS OF 2009 BLACK HISTORY ESSAY CONTEST
Essays Focused on Students' Reactions to the Election of President Barack Obama
Contact: Steve Jensen
860-702-3308/3301
Steven.Jensen@po.state.ct.us

State Comptroller Nancy Wyman today announced the results of her ninth annual Black History Essay Contest, which this year focused on students' reactions to the election of President Barack Obama.

The event is open to high school juniors and is sponsored by the Office of the State Comptroller with the support of New Alliance Bank, Bank of America and People's Bank. Winners receive U.S. Savings Bonds of between $1,000 and $100.

"These essays not only demonstrate the profound effect the election of President Obama has had on Connecticut's students, but show how fortunate we are to have such articulate, inspired young people as our next generation of leaders," Wyman said.

Comptroller Wyman will present the awards to the winners and their families at events scheduled in the coming weeks.

The following are this year's winners and an excerpt from his or her essay:

1) Shaniece Jones/New London Science and Technology Magnet High School

"When I am in school and I listen to my teacher, I find myself hearing the words of Obama: 'Yes, We Can.' I vow to make a difference. This election has made me a new person. I am now a strong believer in faith, I strive to be a helper to my peers and I stand for change in the world."

2) Shanique Wilson/Hartford Public High School

"I can identify with Mr. Obama. Though from humble beginnings and faced with many challenges I too shall rise to achieve academic victory and become the successful lawyer that I aspire to be some day because I too have a dream!"

3) Candice Lobban/ Hyde Leadership School, Hamden

"Unfortunately, there are still people in the world who aren't happy with Barack Obama as President, but when you think about how you could become the next African-American President, those people don't seem to matter."

4) Gul Khan/Central High School, Bridgeport

"The election of Barack Obama is not only a victory on a personal level for the African-American community, but also a triumph for Muslim-Americans like myself in the post-September 11th world. Obama truly symbolizes progress for all people in the United States, no matter what their race may be."

5) Bryan Sih/Danbury High School

"Being Asian-American, I have questioned the possibility of an Asian-American President in the future. This campaign has proved to me that America is not caught in its old web of racism and prejudices, which is a beautiful and moving change to witness."

6) Carlanna Dyer/ Hartford Public High School

Barack Obama " has made me realize that we are NOT the same. We say this to try to make people believe that we have no differences and that we are the perfect country. But that is exactly what America is not about. We come in all different shapes, sizes and colors."

This year's judges were Dorsey Kendrick, President of Gateway Community Technical College; Charles Tisdale, Exec. Dir., Action Bridgeport Community Development Agency; Henry Hartie, of the Hartford Human Relations Commission and Yvette Melendez, Chief of Staff, Connecticut University System.

Learn more about the Connecticut Comptroller's Office by calling up our Internet Home Page, at the link below.

For Immediate Release
April 1, 2009

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