Youth Fair funds scholarship awards for Elie Wiesel Ethics Essay Contest

The Miami-Dade County Youth Fair and Exposition is the financial supporter for the second year in a row of the Elie Wiesel Foundation Prize in Ethics Essay Contest open to high school juniors and seniors in Miami- Dade County Public Schools (M-DCPS).

“The Youth Fair is a proud partner in collaboration with Miami-Dade County Public Schools, The Betsy-South Beach, the Elie Wiesel Foundation for Humanity and LRN in recognizing these outstanding students,” said Robert Hohenstein, president and CEO of the Youth Fair. “This essay contest provides our young people an avenue to contemplate the meaning of what is right to do, because our ethics and values as a people truly are the heart and the soul of who we are and guide where we are headed in the future,” he added.

The essay contest is based on a national college level contest that encourages students to apply Nobel Peace Prize winner Elie Wiesel’s call to action to “think higher, and feel deeper” about ethical issues facing our society.

Scholarship recipents: First Place, Matthew Feiler, junior, International Studies Preparatory Academy, $3,000; Second Place, Caitlin Camarena, junior, iPreparatory Academy; $2,000, and Third Place, Victoria Kontzamanys, senior, TERRA Environmental Research Institute, $1,000.

Two runners-up each received a $250 scholarship: Monica Winkler, junior, Miami Beach Senior High School, and Engels Jiron, senior, School for Advance Studies in Homestead.

Five finalists each received a $50 award: Cassidey A. Phanord, junior, School for Advanced Studies North; Shauna-Kay Harrison, junior, John A. Ferguson High School; Crishera Smith, junior, Miami Carol City High School; Akshat Sanan, junior, Ronald W. Reagan/Doral Senior High School, and Chelsea Cepeda, junior, South Dade High School.

Wiesel selected the 10 finalists and sent a personal message to them in a video presented at the award ceremony on May 20, hosted by The Betsy-South Beach. The ceremony included remarks from superintendent of schools Alberto Carvalho; Youth Fair president and CEO Robert Hohenstein; LRN representative Jean-Marc Levy of New York City, and Jonathan Plutzik, owner of The Betsy-South Beach. Dr. Lawrence S. Feldman, vice-chair of the school board, who was in attendance, made spontaneous remarks.

Eliezer “Elie” Wiesel KBE, for whom the contest is named, is a Romanian-born Jewish-American professor and political activist. He is the author of more than 60 books, including Night, a work based on his experiences as a prisoner in the Auschwitz, Buna, and Buchenwald concentration camps. Wiesel won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1986.

The Youth Fair is a not-for-profit, private organization that awards more than $300,000 annually in college scholarships, cash premiums and awards to local public, private, charter and home school students. To date, the Youth Fair has awarded more than $10 million to Miami-Dade students to help them achieve higher education.

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