An essay by junior Haven Low has been selected as a runner-up in a New York Times personal narrative essay contest for teenagers, which drew 8,000 entries from around the world.
Haven’s essay, “They,” was one of eight runners-up in the contest, which prompted entrants to write about a meaningful life experience in no more than 600 words. “They” draws from Haven’s experience working at a summer camp for gender non-conforming children.
Basing their criteria on the kinds of powerful personal narratives that appear regularly in the New York Times columns “Modern Love,” “Lives,” and “Rites of Passage,” the contest judges chose 35 finalists, from which they selected eight winners, eight runners-up, and 19 honorable mentions.
The personal narrative essay is a common writing assignment in Loomis Chaffee English courses, so when the New York Times contest was announced in September, Loomis English teachers encouraged their students to submit their work for consideration, according to Kate Saxton, the school’s director of Writing Initiatives.
Connect to the January 7 New York Times article to see a full contest description and to read the winning essays.
For more about Writing Initiatives at Loomis Chaffee, connect to the school website page.