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PJC celebrates creative writers with awards ceremony

Published or Revised April 23, 2015

Creative writing awards

Top winners of the PJC creative writing awards, “Swingers of Birches,” included from left: Allegra Thomas of Cooper, winner of The Williams A. Owens Scholarship Award; Leticia Yanez of Sulphur Springs as Outstanding Student in English as a Second Language; Elizabeth Scott of Sulphur Springs as Outstanding Student in English; Iliana Chakarova of Bansko, Bulgaria as Outstanding Student in a Foreign Language; and Journalism Student of the Year Taylor McCloure of Pattonville.

Talented writers were honored Wednesday at Paris Junior College with an awards ceremony.  Prior to the presentations, several instructors read their favorite poems to mark April as National Poetry Month.

Ceremony organizer and PJC English instructor Marsha Dennis thanked the presenters and welcomed everyone to the ceremony, saying it was a great pleasure to reward so many good writers.

The William A. Owens Scholarship Award was presented to Allegra Thomas of Cooper, a dual credit student attending North Hopkins High School. Owens was an area resident who attended Paris Junior College and went on to become a renowned writer and author.

Taylor McCloure of Pattonville was named Journalism Student of the Year. Elizabeth Scott of Sulphur Springs received the Outstanding Student in English.

Leticia Yanez of Sulphur Springs received Outstanding Student in English as a Second Language. Iliana Chakarova, from Bansko, Bulgaria, was named Outstanding Student in a Foreign Language.

Swingers of Birches, the anthology of first prize-winning entries published by the Communications and Fine Arts Division, was distributed at the reception following the awards ceremony. To receive a copy, contact the PJC English Department.

Winners by category include:

Argumentative/Informative Essay: First, “Why Wait,” Micah Heatwoles of Paris, PJC; Second, “Loneliness,” Sarah Wilburn of Caddo Mills, Caddo Mills High School; Third, “A Rose for Emily,” Shelby Webster of Royse City, Caddo Mills High School; Honorable Mention, “The Gilded Six Bits,” Courtney Morrison of Caddo Mills, Caddo Mills High School. Judged by Joan Mathis; Instructor of English, Writing Center Director, retired; Paris Junior College, Paris, Texas.

Narrative Essay: First, “My Friends When I’m Alone,” David Sleeper of Royse City, Quinlan Ford High School; Second, “The Toy Drive that Changed My Life,” Laura Reynolds of Paris, PJC; Third, “That One Regret,” Amanda Cope of Brookston, Chisum High School; Honorable Mention, “Decisions Make a Difference,” Misty Stotts of Paris, PJC. Judged by Boyd Minner; Professor of English Arts, Sciences, Humanities & Kinesiology; Navarro College, Corsicana, TX.

Poetry: First, “Innocence,” Anne Rouleau of Greenville, Celeste High School; Second, “Life Altering Youth Camp,” Gideon Little of Emory, PJC-Sulphur Springs Center; Third, “Soul Sweller,” Rebecca Graham of Arthur City, PJC; Fourth, “The Rite,” David Sleeper of Royse City, Quinlan Ford High School; Fifth, “Terry,” Jillian Fisher of Winnsboro, PJC-Sulphur Springs Center. Judged by Bertha Wise; Professor of English, Division of English/Humanities; Oklahoma City Community College, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

Research Essay with Documentation: First, “Roger Chillingworth: A Face of Evil,” Shikha Prakash of Paris, Paris High School; Second, “The Psycho Critic Way,” Arish Pardiwalla of Paris, Paris High School; Third, “Heart of Darkness,” Hani Safi of Paris, Paris High School; Fourth, “Heart of Darkness,” Tyler Scott of Paris, Paris High School; Honorable Mention, “Guns Are More Protection Than Hazard,” Lainey Wolf of Detroit, Detroit High School. Judged by Beth Shelton, Instructor of English, Communications Division Chair, Dean; retired, Paris Junior College, Paris, Texas.

Regional Literature: First, “Under the Willow,” David Sleeper of Royse City, Quinlan Ford High School; Second, “Lamar County Fair,” Kaitlyn Martin of Detroit, Detroit High School; Third, “Paris, TX,” Shikha Prakash of Paris, Paris High School. Judged by Anita Fisher; Customer Service Specialist, Saputo Dairy Foods; Dallas, Texas.

Short Story: First, “For Love and Fish,” Patrick C. Harrison III of Farmersville, PJC-Greenville Center; Second, “The Apple,” Todd Kleiboer of Sulphur Springs, Cooper High School; Third, “Increasing Human Potential,” Shikha Prakash of Paris, Paris High School; Fourth, “The Gunslinger’s Inferno,” David Sleeper of Royse City, Quinlan Ford High School. Judged by Connie Dodd; Instructor of English, Dual Credit Studies; retired, Paris High School, Paris, Texas.

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