7th Annual High School Essay Contest Winners



The 7th Annual Volunteer Square Teen Essay Contest, in partnership with Hearst Connecticut Media, has come to a close. We received 116 essays from 41 high schools across Connecticut this year, by far our best year yet! The essays submitted truly represented how volunteering impacts the lives of teenagers in Connecticut.

Thank you to everyone that submitted an essay and to all that helped us promote this year's contest. Special thanks to our partners at Hearst Connecticut Media and to the Volunteer Square Advisory Board for reading every essay and helping us choose the winners. 

And now, without further ado, we are thrilled to announce the 7th Annual High School Essay Contest Winners. 

1st place winner Tabitha Baker.jpg 

First Place was awarded to Tabitha Baker, a sophomore at Norwalk High School. Tabitha's essay shares her love for volunteering, especially with the kindergarten students at the neighboring Naramake Elementary School. "It takes one act of kindness to make a huge impact in society, which is why volunteering is so important to me. A volunteer can help change a student’s future, as well as provide hope and help to people in need. A volunteer can help build up a person’s life as well as save another depending on how they wish to volunteer." Read Tabitha's full essay HERE.

Amity School Counselor Marian Boyns, 2nd place winner Nolan Young, Principal Anna Mahon_0.jpg 



Second Place was awarded to Nolan Young, a sophomore at Amity Regional High School in Woodbridge. Nolan's essay shares how his road to volunteering was personal, his mom wanted him to gain some perspective on how to approach difficult situations with his brother, who was born with a rare genetic disorder, while also considering his disabilities. "Last year, I volunteered with the organization, “ICanBike” and helped teach kids with various disabilities how to ride a bike in just one week’s time. Seeing the look of pride and pure joy on some of their faces was really gratifying. I could immediately see that participating in this great program had a positive outcome and provided an experience for a community that is often left out because of their disabilities." Read Nolan's full essay HERE.


Darien HS School Counselor Kaitlin Stanton and 3rd place winner Amy Watkins.jpg

Third Place was awarded to Amy Watkins, a junior at Darien High School. Amy's essay talks about her volunteer work at The Maritime Aquarium and how it's relevant because of the effect of climate change right now and the importance of teaching people about it. She also talks about her work with The Darien Book Aid and how she is supporting world-wide literacy and connecting Darien to a greater international community. "I find volunteer work extremely important because it has the ability to unite a currently very divided country over shared interests, and it is these acts of contribution and kindness that makes the world seem a little more connected." Read Amy's full essay HERE.