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Women's Commission Honors Student Essay Winners

June 10, 2007 — Students across St. Thomas received awards for essays from the Commission on the Status of Women Saturday morning in front of family and friends at Palms Court Harborview Hotel.
The second-annual essay contest challenged fourth to eighth graders to write on the following topics: “My Dream for the Virgin Islands,” “Walk a Mile in my Shoes and You Will Find” and “Why We Need a V.I. Constitution.”
The “My Dreams for the Virgin Islands” essay winners:
— First place: Klaudius Maynard, Ulla F. Muller Elementary School;
— Second place: Danielle Olive, Sts. Peter & Paul Catholic School; and
— Third place: Z’Niqua Wattley, the Ulla F. Muller Elementary School.
“My dream is for everyone to have patience, compassion and forgiveness,” Olive said as she accepted her award. She continued by saying that “everyone should say 'please' and 'thank you.'” The inspiration for her speech came from greeting people by saying "good morning" or "good afternoon," but finding that people still treated her rudely, Olive said.
In accepting his award, Maynard, valedictorian of his class, shared his desire for the Virgin Islands to be governed by a woman someday: “Women are nurturing and know what to say when someone needs them.”
Briana Adams from the Antilles School wrote the award-winning “Walk a Mile in My Shoes and You Will Find” essay. No student entered an essay for “Why We Need a V.I. Constitution.”
Keynote speaker Ananta Pancham, a staff writer for the Source, encouraged the students to consider their impact on the world at large.
"Your words, your efforts and your beliefs can make a difference in the lives of others," she said. "It can make them feel that they are important. It can give them a voice when no one is listening."
In her speech on the value of writing, the Antilles school graduate said “becoming a part of stories written on a page can provide you with a portal to anywhere you want to go." She continued, "Writing takes you beyond the confines of the everyday, and into a realm of possibilities.”
Delegate Donna M. Christensen congratulated the winners and thanked them “for putting your words on paper.”
“They have taken the mandate and made something really meaningful,” Christensen said of the winners. “You are the elite.”
Saturday's event also included a little musical entertainment. The 2007 junior calypsonian king for this year’s Carnival events, Jalen Fredericks, a sixth grader at J. Antonio Jarvis school, entertained with his winning song, “I Want De Quadrille.”
The Commission on the Status of Women was reinstated four years ago by then Gov. Charles Turnbull, according to Sonia Boyce, commission chair. It works “to get women to understand that they have a powerful voice in the community,” she said.
The commission holds leadership conferences and health and political workshops throughout the year. Last year, the commission held a conference called Phenomenal Women Speak, in which different leaders addressed such topics as health, economics, leadership and politics.
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June 10, 2007 -- Students across St. Thomas received awards for essays from the Commission on the Status of Women Saturday morning in front of family and friends at Palms Court Harborview Hotel.
The second-annual essay contest challenged fourth to eighth graders to write on the following topics: “My Dream for the Virgin Islands,” “Walk a Mile in my Shoes and You Will Find” and “Why We Need a V.I. Constitution.”
The “My Dreams for the Virgin Islands” essay winners:
-- First place: Klaudius Maynard, Ulla F. Muller Elementary School;
-- Second place: Danielle Olive, Sts. Peter & Paul Catholic School; and
-- Third place: Z’Niqua Wattley, the Ulla F. Muller Elementary School.
“My dream is for everyone to have patience, compassion and forgiveness,” Olive said as she accepted her award. She continued by saying that “everyone should say 'please' and 'thank you.'” The inspiration for her speech came from greeting people by saying "good morning" or "good afternoon," but finding that people still treated her rudely, Olive said.
In accepting his award, Maynard, valedictorian of his class, shared his desire for the Virgin Islands to be governed by a woman someday: “Women are nurturing and know what to say when someone needs them.”
Briana Adams from the Antilles School wrote the award-winning “Walk a Mile in My Shoes and You Will Find” essay. No student entered an essay for “Why We Need a V.I. Constitution.”
Keynote speaker Ananta Pancham, a staff writer for the Source, encouraged the students to consider their impact on the world at large.
"Your words, your efforts and your beliefs can make a difference in the lives of others," she said. "It can make them feel that they are important. It can give them a voice when no one is listening."
In her speech on the value of writing, the Antilles school graduate said “becoming a part of stories written on a page can provide you with a portal to anywhere you want to go." She continued, "Writing takes you beyond the confines of the everyday, and into a realm of possibilities.”
Delegate Donna M. Christensen congratulated the winners and thanked them “for putting your words on paper.”
“They have taken the mandate and made something really meaningful,” Christensen said of the winners. “You are the elite.”
Saturday's event also included a little musical entertainment. The 2007 junior calypsonian king for this year’s Carnival events, Jalen Fredericks, a sixth grader at J. Antonio Jarvis school, entertained with his winning song, “I Want De Quadrille.”
The Commission on the Status of Women was reinstated four years ago by then Gov. Charles Turnbull, according to Sonia Boyce, commission chair. It works “to get women to understand that they have a powerful voice in the community,” she said.
The commission holds leadership conferences and health and political workshops throughout the year. Last year, the commission held a conference called Phenomenal Women Speak, in which different leaders addressed such topics as health, economics, leadership and politics.
Back Talk Share your reaction to this news with other Source readers. Please include headline, your name and city and state/country or island where you reside.