Hispanic Heritage Essay Winners 

Four grand prize winners awarded a laptop computer, printer and scholarship

December 20, 2010

Eight Chicago Public Schools high school students were recognized and awarded prizes for essays they authored as part of the District’s Hispanic Heritage Month Essay Competition.


Essays centered on the topic: “The motto of the United Farm Workers, founded by Latino leader and non-violent activist Cesar Chavez, is ‘¡Sí, se puede!’ (Yes, it can be done!).  What does this motto mean to you personally and what person of Hispanic descent, in your opinion, most exemplifies these words?”


Winners were recognized last month at a banquet at North-Grand High School, which was emceed by Thomas Johnson, Assistant Chicago City Treasurer.


 The 2010 Hispanic Heritage Month Essay Competition was open to all CPS 9th-through-12th graders.


Grand Prize Winners

  • 9th grade, Maddie Wagner Sherer, Whitney Young Magnet High School
  • 10th grade, Juan Castrejon, Edwin G. Foreman High School
  • 11th grade, Scarlett Moya, William Howard Taft High School
  • 12th grade, Daisy Velasco, William Howard Taft High School


Each grand prize winner was awarded a laptop computer and printer, plus a $5,000 scholarship to Roosevelt University.  In addition, the 12th grade winner received a $1,000 College Expense Fund Award, to be used toward college expenses.  The teachers who monitored the prize-winning students each received a $100 gift card.


Second Place Winners

  • 9th grade, Alejandro Llamas, George Washington High School
  • 10th grade, Yesenia Catalan, George Washington High School
  • 11th grade, Ana Patricia Juarez, Lincoln Park High School
  • 12th grade, Beatriz Lebron, North-Grand High School


Each second place winner received a digital camera and printer.


Students from 37 high schools submitted more than 3,500 essays.  Cash prizes totaling $500 for teacher/staff professional development were awarded to Chicago High School for Agricultural Sciences, Spry Community Links, Lincoln Park and Eric Solorio Academy High Schools for submitting the highest percentage of essays in relation to their overall high school enrollment.


Grand prize and second place prize winners were selected by judges from the competition’s co-sponsors: Chicago Public Schools, Roosevelt University, American Bottling Company and the Office of the City Treasurer.


Congratulations to all the winners and everyone who participated. 


Don’t miss the next essay competition to honor Black History Month in February.


Learn more about William Howard Taft High School

Learn more about Edwin G. Foreman High School

Learn more about Whitney Young Magnet High School

Learn more about North-Grand High School