Students Take Honors in Junior Achievement Essay Contest

January 5, 2009
Richard Montgomery Sophomore Wins $20,000 Grand Prize

Six Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) students have won top honors in an essay contest presented by Junior Achievement.

Nearly 500 participants from across the Washington region sent in entries on the topic, “Greater Washington—Why It’s the Best Region to Build and Grow a Business.” Of the six MCPS winners, four attend Richard Montgomery High School, one attends Walter Johnson High School and the sixth attends Walt Whitman High School.

Justin Wolin, a sophomore at Richard Montgomery, won the grand prize of $20,000. His essay, which crystallized his thoughts after a day of exploring the region on the Metro, will be published in the February issue of Washingtonian magazine. Five other MCPS students were runners-up and won $10,000 each in the contest. They are: Donald Borenstein, a senior at Walter Johnson; Kevin Chai, a senior at Richard Montgomery; Elena Perry, a junior at Richard Montgomery; Jeff Rappaport, a senior at Richard Montgomery, and Sophie van Bastelaer, a freshman at Walt Whitman.

A total of ten prizes was awarded, including nine $10,000 awards and the $20,000 prize.

The winners were honored last month at the 20th annual Washington Business Hall of Fame Dinner, which also recognized extraordinary business people for their professional achievements, innovative leadership and community spirit.

The competition was sponsored by David M. Rubenstein, co-founder and managing director of The Carlyle Group, a global private equity firm based in Washington, D.C. The contest was open to any high school student in the Greater Washington region.

Junior Achievement is dedicated to inspiring and preparing young people to succeed in a global economy. The organization’s programs focus on entrepreneurship, work readiness and financial literacy.

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