2013 Foundations For Life essay winners announced

Farm Forum

BROOKINGS – The South Dakota 4-H CHARACTER COUNTS! project and the South Dakota 4-H Foundation announced the winners of the 2013 Foundations For Life essay contest.

More than 70 students took part in the state contest that encouraged young people to choose a maxim from a predetermined list and write an essay that shows how the maxim fits into their lives.

The contest promotes reading, critical thinking and composition skills as young people write about the importance of having good character.

Across South Dakota, 300 student writers participated in local competitions. The students chose from a range of maxims such as “When one helps another, both gain in strength” and “The smallest good deed is better than the grandest good intention.”

“The project challenged schools to participate in the statewide “Foundations for Life” essay contest as another way to teach character education to their students,” said Karelyn Farrand, 4-H Youth Character Education Field Specialist and the coordinator of CHARACTER COUNTS! for SDSU Extension. “The judges stated they really enjoyed reading the students’ essays and were amazed at the insight these young people had on life! The youth’s insightful essays made judging a challenge.”

The winners from fourth, seventh and ninth grade classes around South Dakota included the following:

Fourth Grade Winners

· First place, Hope Buchholz of Waverly/South Shore;

· Second place, Aiden Boerger of Milbank;

· Third place, Lydia Schroeder of Waverly/South Shore;

· Fourth place, Allison Lewin of West Central Elementary; and

· Fifth place, Connor Comes of Waverly/South Shore.

Seventh Grade Winners

· First place, Bridger Gordon of Brookings;

· Second place, Anna Ayers of Brookings;

· Third place, Casey Starling of Brookings;

· Fourth place, Macey Fields of Brookings; and

· Fifth place, Carolyn Blatchford of Brookings.

Ninth Grade Winner

· First place, Ryder Heitz of Newell.

CHARACTER COUNTS! is a trademark of the CC! Coalition, a project of the Josephson Institute of Ethics. It operates in South Dakota under the leadership of the 4-H Youth Development program of the South Dakota State University Extension Service. To learn more visit or contact