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Lincoln Charter’s Wright wins NCHSAA Scholar-Athlete essay contest

Staff report

CHAPEL HILL—Alyssa Wright of Lincoln Charter High School and Benjamin Ward of John A. Holmes High School won top honors in the eighth North Carolina High School Athletic Association Scholar-Athlete essay contest. Winners were chosen blindly by a panel of judges with criteria that included originality, content, organization and grammar.

The NCHSAA Scholar-Athlete program is one of the Association’s most popular voluntary programs and recognizes excellence in the classroom as well as on the playing court or field. As part of the program, the NCHSAA offers the essay contest annually, with student-athletes submitting a 400-word essay each semester.

The Fall 2017 semester’s prompt asked had student-athletes to write about the different responsibilities they have as a scholar-athlete. One male and one female winner were chosen from the pool of entries.

Wright is a sophomore at Lincoln Charter who competes in cross-country and basketball.  In her essay, Wright described the multiple responsibilities scholar-athletes have that include, time management and balance.  Another responsibility she wrote about was expectations as she described, “Most athletes that play for a school have certain expectations held by that school, and it is a responsibility for the athlete to uphold these expectations.”  

Ward is a senior baseball student-athlete at John A. Holmes High School. The responsibilities of a scholar-athlete that Ward described were time management, leading by example and making sacrifices. Ward describes the responsibility of sacrifice as, “The biggest reward is when you sacrifice and keep your priorities in order to help the team to the finish line.  This means being responsible for getting things done in the classroom and on the fields…It requires discipline.”

The scholar-athlete essay competition female runner-up was Natalie Swaim, a senior student-athlete on the swimming and diving team at Tuscola High School. The male runner-up for the NCHSAA scholar-athlete essay competition was senior cross-country, indoor track & field, and baseball student-athlete, Owen Henry, from Holly Springs High School.

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