Each semester, we hold an essay contest to honor our students' hard work. Winners receive a $75 award and the opportunity to be published in I Write, the Rhetoric textbook. Students may submit Narrative Essays, Rhetorical or Source Analyses, Argumentative or Position Essays, Multimodal or Multigenre projects, reflective writing, and exploratory work. Submissions are welcome throughout the semester, but are limited to one per student. To submit, visit go.illinois.edu/rhetcontest.

Student Essay Contest Flyer

 

2022–2023 Academic Year

Summer 2023 Winners

  • Alex Fallaw, “Genre and Platform: A Happy Medium” Kristi McDuffie
  • Ella Phalen, “Competition in Youth Sports and its Effect on Mental Health and Development” Cyanne Topaum

Spring 2023 Winners

  • Alexandra Way, “Miscarriage Matters” Jordan Sellers
  • Ariah Booker, “How Do You See Me: The Gendered Portrayal of African Americans” Dana Smith
  • Ava Brancato, “Project Proposal: Exploring Benefits and Potential Eligibility for Physician-Assisted Suicide” Barry Hudek
  • Cecilia Lopez, “The Power of Paint: How Murals Shape Politics of Pilsen” Mary Rose Cottingham
  • Christian Zlatarski, “A Revitalization of Personal Finance Classes in U.S. High Schools” Brian Landes
  • Christopher Taylor, “Source Analysis Essay on Artificial Intelligence’s Impact on Society” Mary Rose Cottingham
  • Ellie Rohe, “Bioconcrete’s Feasibility” Matt Schering
  • Emma Guarni, “Animal Captivity Awareness” Jenn Lee
  • Grace Yoon, “Research Proposal: The Potential Negatives Associated with Code Switching” Krista Roberts
  • Isabella Chon, “Environmental Racism: An Injustice that Must Be Acknowledged” Calandra Warren
  • Jamaira Williams, “A Letter Rewritten:  The Institutionalized Conviction of Blackness Within the Biosphere of Society” Marie Rivera Lopez
  • Jocelyn Gama, “Poetry on the Lives of Immigrants at the Border” Marie Rivera Lopez
  • Karah McCarl, “Why United States Figure Skating Must Change” Tessa Crosby
  • Kyle Zhou, “Moving is Not the Solution: Resolving Rural Housing Vulnerability from a Public Housing Perspective” Dana Smith
  • Luke Gauer, “The Impact of AI” Zachariah McVicker
  • Margaret Wei, “The Role of Socioeconomic Status and the Associated Risk Factors in Nicotine Addiction Development Among Adolescents” Erin Hoffman
  • Nicole Wee, “Racism and Vegans: What’s the Connection?” Marie Rivera Lopez
  • Sangjun Ko, “The Dual Nature of Hallyu and K-Pop” Zach Simon
  • Shelby Bushong, “Service Dog Therapy” Jordan Sellers
  • Zhen Yan, “Use New Words to Treat Living Beings as Families: Let’s Use the Toulmin Analysis Method and Rhetorical Triangle” Mary Hays

Fall 2022 Winners

  • Rawda Abdeltawab, “Pilot Shortage: A Massive Challenge for the Aviation Industry” Meg Morrow
  • Amari Anderson, “Racial Prejudice in Healthcare” Yoonsuh Kim
  • Aera Boateng, “Overlooked: Why Neurodivergent BIPOC Aren’t Getting Help” Cyanne Topaum
  • Nia Brass, “Psychopathy within ASPD: A Perspective on Treatment” Zach Simon
  • Roy Chang, “The Relationship Between Remote Learning and Mental Health” Yoonsuh Kim
  • Elliot Finn, “Viability of a Novel Cancer Treatment Modality” Krista Roberts
  • Macy Hull, “Annotated Bibliography and Synthesis on Revenge Porn” Curtis Dickerson
  • Rebeca Jacobs, “The Impact of Security Cameras Regarding Campus Safety” Mary Lindsey
  • Riley Millsap, “The Cost of Plastics” Kathryn O’Toole
  • Daniel Odicho, “You Are Missing Out on the Flipped Learning Model” Mary Rose Cottingham
  • Martin Pouliot, “Should Human Development in Floodplains be Prohibited?” Calandra Warren
  • Anaya Prasad, “Genre Remix and Reflection: PTA Newsletter” Jordan Sellers
  • Jenna Quafisheh, “Importance of Special Education” Andrea Sielicki
  • Srijana Sapkota, “The Impact of Monetary Support on Poverty and Mental Health” Hannah Charity
  • Zhuoyang Shen, “’Romantic Dream in Garden’ -The Wonderful Experience at the 2022 Traditional Chinese Culture Carnival” Mary Hays
  • Josh Steinfink, “Implementing Music at Home” Jordan Sellers
  • Olivia Thompson, “Social Media’s Effects on Female Body Image: A Poison to Our Youth” Marie Rivera López
  • Li Tianxin, “Reasons that Social Media is a Great Communication Tool for NGOs” Victoria Millen
  • Victoria Titus, “Letters Concerning the Atlanta Child Murders” Lily Dawn
  • Dev Rishi Udata, “Drilling Deeper: The Harmful Effects of Hydraulic Fracturing” Shawn Gilmore
  • Kotryna Vaitkevicius, “Infographic for Persons Using Opioids in the Chicago Area” Krista Roberts
  • Miles Wood, “Psilocybin: A Revolutionary New Treatment for People Suffering from Depression” David Miller
  • Boyang Zhao, “The Regulation of Cryptocurrency” Carrie Johnson
  • Xicheng Zhu, “The revolution has not yet succeeded” John Claborn
  • Yu Ziheng, “Present to a Peer” Ryan Flanagan

Spring 2022 Winners

  • Alyssa Marmolejo, “Censorship: A Matter of Public Influence or Corporate Benefit?” Instructor Daniel Myers
  • Anne Schmidt, “The Effects of Media on Sustainable Fashion,” Instructor Patrick Fadely
  • Arnav Motwani, “The Psychology of Procrastination,” Instructor Curtis Dickerson
  • Brian Pau, “Is Solar Energy the Future for Developing Nations?” Instructor Mary Rose Cottingham
  • Daniel Wang, “Object Ethnography for the Real World,” Instructor Neal Liu
  • Elaine Wei, “Commercialization: The Death or Renaissance of Classical Music?” Instructor Mary Lindsey
  • Elisabeth Zamora, “Pressure on BIG 10 and NCAA athletes and its Mental Effects,” Instructor Andrea Sielicki
  • Emily Lee, “Synthesis and Annotated Bibliography on Cultural Impacts on Mental Health,” Instructor Mary Lindsey
  • Haddon Lybarger, “Ad Campaign: Social Media and Its Effects on Adolescents' Mental Health,” Instructor Naomi Taub
  • Jaya Ashrafi, “The Political and Psychological Impacts of Negative Advertising,” Instructor Naomi Taub
  • Jazmin Villagomez-Guzman, “Source Analysis: The Relationship Between Social Media and Eating Disorders,” Instructor Erin Hoffman
  • Jonathan Gao, “Revelations in Film: Asian American Representation,” Instructor Jade Williams
  • Madelyn Pawyza, “Exploratory Essay,” Instructor Erin Hoffman
  • Madison Helms, “The Scariest Mask of All: Autistic Camouflaging in Females,” Instructor Meg Morrow
  • Riya Patel, “New Beginnings,” Instructor Kirsten Dillender
  • Saneea Malik, “Analyzing Factors Affecting Implementation of the Sustainable Product Life-Cycle in the Cosmetics Industry,” Instructor Mary Rose Cottingham
  • Sophia Gardner, “Shortcomings of University Mental Health Resources,” Instructor Victoria Millen
  • Sophia Talbert, “Modern Problem: United States Teacher Shortage,” Instructor Erin Hoffman
  • Tallulah Trezevant, “Drug Decriminalization: Put That in Your Pipe and Smoke It!” Instructor Zach Simon
  • Zaina Anarwala, “Can we 3D Print the Future of Housing?” Instructor Meg Morrow
  • Zhijun Zhao, “Sino-US Cooperation for Creative Ideas on Campus Lifestyle,” Instructor Mary Hays
  • Zixuan Zhang, “Marino's Abuse of Empathy: Walked a Long Way, but Forgot Why to Start,” Instructor Ryan Flanagan

Fall 2021 Winners

  • Acosta, Michael, “The Benefits of Implementing Restorative Justice into our Prison System,” Instructor Sielicki, Andrea
  • Agarwal, Yash, “Research on Waste Segregation and Composting in India,” Instructor Myers, Daniel
  • Anand, Rishikesh, “Restructuring American Foreign Policy by Analyzing American Interventionism,” Instructor Dillender, Kirsten
  • Aso, Mayu, “The Successful Use of Rhetoric in Sources Related to Medical Cadaver Research,” Instructor Williams, Jade
  • Babu, Sanjana, “The Impact of the Caste System on Non-Hindu Populations,” Instructor Johnson, Carrie
  • Bui, Sydney, “Research on Western Violence Against Asians during COVID-19,” Instructor Furlong, Madeline
  • Funk, Rachelle, “Examining the Link Between the COVID Vaccine and POTS through Two Different Genres,” Instructor Odom, Mike
  • Gadde, Akhil, “Weighing the Benefits against Ethical Constraints of Nanotechnology in Medicine,” Instructor Cottingham, Mary Rose
  • Garcia Lopez, “Sandra, Drug Decriminalization,” Instructor Garcia Marquez, Issy
  • Gu, Rachael, “Alternative Energy Sources for a Sustainable Future (Nuclear Energy),” Instructor Shuger, Alixandra
  • Heersche, Jeremiah, “The U.S. Criminal Injustice System: The Mass Incarceration Era,” Instructor Short, Cassidy
  • Hosey, Grace, “Synthesizing and Annotating Sources on the History and Ethics of Greek Life,” Instructor Dickerson, Curtis
  • Junzhou, Fang, “Photographs Taken in My Writing Life,” Instructor Hays, Mary
  • Moody, Amaris, “Snowfall, Masculinity, and Drugs,” Instructor Nyikos, Dani
  • Murillo, Daniella, “The Mental Health of Undocumented Children,” Instructor Stewart, Catie
  • Ovalle, Stephanie, “The Embark of My Journey With Writing,” Instructor Hurley, Michael
  • Park, Michael, “Research on the Correlation Between Wealthy Students and Standardized Tests,” Instructor Weber, Rebecca
  • Phatak, Mukta, “The Effects of Principals on Dual Language Education,” Instructor Morrow, Meg
  • Renteria, Camila, “Developing a Better Bilingual Education,” Instructor Short, Cassidy
  • Sauer, Isabella, “Comparative Source Analyses on Arguments Regarding Critical Race Theory,” Instructor Bacon, Dustin
  • Soni, Keya, “Fast Fashion Position Essay,” Instructor Bishop, David
  • Turner, Linnea, “Sustainable Coastal Management in Growing Coastal Areas,” Instructor Furlong, Madeline
  • Yang, Owen, “Left-Behind Children Research Proposal Essay,” Instructor Sellers, Jordan
  • Zhang, Alex, “Modern Technology and Their Impacts on Youth,” Instructor Dillender, Kirsten
  • Zielke, Josiah, “Deutschland and the Future,” Instructor Hurley, Michael

 

Summer 2021 Winners

  • Willy Choe, “Music: More Than Just an Art Form,” Instructor Suzanne Valentine
  • Marina Betancourt, “How does an authoritative style parenting approach breed more benefits in a college student when it comes to their physical health, behaviors, and mental well-being?” Instructor Meg Cole

 

Spring 2021 Winners

  • Jose Arellano, “The Effects of the BRI on ASEAN Nations,” Instructor Kristi McDuffie
  • Madilyn Bernhard, “Are Warehouses Worth the Harm They Produce?,” Instructor Isaac Willis
  • Anniston Brant, “Female Serial Murder Research Proposal,” Instructor Jordan Sellers
  • TJ Byun, “Pandemic (Deluxe) by COVID-19,” Instructor Tracy Anne Travis
  • Isaiah Calaranan, “The African Diaspora and Music in America,” Instructor Neal Liu
  • Samar Chehab, “Research Proposal: COVID-19 Lockdown and Eating Disorder Development,” Instructor Jordan Sellers
  • Storey Childs, “The Effect of the ERA on US Law,” Instructor Emily Renne
  • Xiaoyang Chu, “Cultured Meat:  World-Changing Technology Is on The Way,” Instructor Mary Hays
  • Daniela Del Bosque Siller, “The Successful Use of Rhetoric in Sources Related to Gender Discrimination in Healthcare,” Instructor Kristi McDuffie
  • Kate Friedman, “What are the influences mass media has on body image of adolescent women of color?”  Instructor Jordan Sellers
  • Jeremy Hughes, “Should Everyone Adopt Plant-Based Diets?” Instructor Weston Morrow
  • Brenna Hurtado, “Disability Rights in the Workplace, ” Instructor Kristi McDuffie
  • Kaden Kirby, “Stigma and The FDA Gay Blood Ban,” Instructor Cassidy Short
  • Mayura Kulkarni, “Freshwater Scarcity in Developing Countries,” Instructor Curtis Dickerson
  • Mason Mitchell, “A Solution to Mental Disorder Diagnoses: Molecular Genetics,” Instructor Cassidy Short
  • Patricia Moreno,  “Synthesizing Sources on the Factors Contributing to Health Disparities amongst Women of Color,” Instructor Alixandra Shuger
  • Giselle Munoz, “Use of Rhetoric in Conversation with Bilingual Education,” Instructor Erin Hoffman
  • Arisu Oya, “Asynchronous vs. Synchronous Learning,” Instructor Rebecca Weber
  • Noah Pogonitz, “Rhetorical Analysis: "What's the Point of College?" Instructor Jordan Sellers
  • Emma Prybylski, “Synthesis of Retail Pet Sale Legislation and Puppy Mill Sources,” Instructor Weston Morrow
  • Maeli Sanchez, “The Impact of Screentime on the Mental Health of Young People,” Instructor Hollis Druhet
  • Jacob Wagner, “An Argument for a Rhetorical Change in Right to Repair,” Instructor Tessa Crosby
  • Tianle Wu, “Self-contradiction, Fallacy and Out of Focus: Will Renkl Convince Her Audience?” Instructor Ryan Flanagan

 

Fall 2020 Winners

  • Caroline Anderson, “Position Essay on Prison Reform,” Instructor Erin Cheslow
  • Oneida Byrd, “Multigenre Research on Diversity and Inclusivity in Panhellenic Sororities,” Instructor Dana Kinzy
  • Isabella Chacon, “From Internal to External: The Bidirectional Influences on a Child’s Development,” Instructor Dan Zhang
  • Xiaoyang Chu, “A Letter to a Friend: Videogames: Angels or Devils,” Instructor Mary Hays
  • Joyce Credo, “Source Control during COVID-19,” Instructor Elizabeth Boyle
  • Kacie Cusick, “Is Title IX Successful? A Source Analysis,” Instructor Kent Quaney
  • Colby Garrard, “Genetic Editing: Is it in the Near Future?” Erin Cheslow
  • Emma Glennon, “Annotated Bibliography on Effectiveness of Professional Athlete Protesting,” Instructor Erin Hoffman
  • Eyzid Hadi, “Source Synthesis: Autonomous Vehicles and Safety,” Instructor Kent Quaney
  • Greta Heinz, “Moral Distress Among Nurses & the Provided Quality of Care for Cancer Patients,” Instructor Jordan Sellers
  • Hamza Mohammad Husain, “The Negative Effects of Covid-19 and its Prevention Measures,” Instructor Kristi McDuffie
  • Xiaojun Jia, “Why do Chinese International Students Love Chinese Idol Reality Shows?” Instructor Mary Rose Cottingham
  • Heeseong Jo, “Climate Change: renewable energy as the ultimate solution,” Instructor Debayudh Chatterjee
  • Naomi Lindquist, “Stop Silencing Survivors: Ballerinas and Rape,” Instructor Elizabeth Boyle
  • Lauren Moy, “What it Means to Be Asian,” Instructor Tessa Crosby
  • Oliver Mucka, “Solutions To Decreasing The Effects of Tourism on National Parks,” Instructor Kathryn O’Toole
  • Thomas Nguyen, “Rhetorical Analysis of “On STEM” by Johann Neem,” Instructor Jordan Sellers
  • Britney A. Origel, “My Guardian Angel,” Instructor Michael Hurley
  • Ania Pupa, “The Truth About Mask Wearing During a Pandemic,” Instructor Mary Rose Cottingham
  • Julianne Ross, “We Need More Teachers on Aisle Three: A Shortage that is Seemingly Never-ending,” Instructor Dustin Bacon
  • Aria Ruan, “Synthesizing Sources on Ethical Considerations about Neurotechnology Development,” Instructor Kristi McDuffie
  • Mia Sabic, “Televising Hatred: How the Media Normalizes Racist Stereotypes,” Instructor Debayudh Chatterjee
  • Brea Schorn, “Annotated Bibliography: Teaching Graphic Novels for Inclusivity,” Instructor Jordan Sellers
  • Emily Springer, “Direct-to-Consumer Genetic Testing: So Much More Than Just Results,” Instructor Dana Kinzy
  • Shulamit Wu, “Promoting Democracy through Cryptocurrency and Blockchain Technology,” Instructor Drew Jennings
  • Wenpeng Zhang, “My Shambling Pursuit for Writing,” Instructor Mary Hays

 

Spring 2020 Winners

  • Caedan Cervantes, “Bro Science Isn’t Science: How Misleading Claims in Fitness Set Harmful Precedents,” Instructor Debayudh Chatterjee
  • Qianzhong Chen, “Education and Class Stratification,” Instructor John Maclean
  • Lauren Di Stefano, “Whore Online, Madonna Offline: How the Dichotomy of Young Women’s Relationships with Sexualized Social Media Impacts Their Relational Health,” Instructor Suzanne Valentine
  • Devon Jackson, “SORRY! (Settler’s Colonialism: Oppression Edition) Game Guide,” Instructor Kathryn O’Toole
  • Haruya Kamitani, “Societal Influence on College Major Choice,” Instructor Emily Renne
  • Hanifa Mohammed, “Tap Water Versus Bottled Water,” Instructor Mary Lindsey
  • Daisy Ruiz, “The Influence of Social Media on the Political Participation of Youth,” Instructor Emily Renne
  • Sarvani Upadrasta, “Digital Racism,” Instructor Aidan Watson-Morris
  • Mariah Webb, “Mira Con Tus Ojos,” Instructor Jasmine Johnson
  • Kathleen Wilkison, “What are the benefits of bilingualism and second language acquisition at an early age?,” Instructor Mary Lindsey
  • Fan Yang, “Fisheries Would Hate the Climate Change,” Instructor Mary Hays
  • Ushna Zamir, “The Macro Problem of Microplastics,” Instructor Kathryn O’Toole
  • Ushna Zamir, “The Debate on Nuclear Fusion as a Viable Source for Renewable Energy,” Instructor Kathryn O’Toole
  • Ting Zheng, “Equity Unachieved Of Women In the Music Industry Among Artists, Songwriters, Producers, and Creators,” Instructor Neal Liu