The University of Iowa
The University of Iowa News Services Home News Releases UI in the News Subscribe to UI News Contact Us

University of Iowa News Release

April 5, 2006

UI Awards Prizes In Japanese Essay Contest For High School, College Students

High school and college students from around the Midwest competed in a Japanese essay contest sponsored last month by the Japanese program in the Department of Asian Languages and Literature in the University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. Students competed in two high school levels and three college levels, and 15 winners were chosen from the 40 submissions.

The authors of the winning essays were invited to an award ceremony with their family, friends and teachers on Saturday, March 25. First place winners received $200 and a collection of books; second place winners received $150 and a collection of books; and third place winners received $100 and a collection of books.

Contest winners, their schools and essay titles are listed below:

High School Level I

  • First Place: Joseph Hansen, Roosevelt High School, Minneapolis: "The Reason Why I like Japanese"
  • Second Place: Jennifer Ahn, Valley High School, West Des Moines: "My Friends"
  • Third Place: Anthony Davis, Roosevelt High School, Minneapolis: "My Family"

High School Level II

  • First Place: Cody Hodson, Roosevelt High School (Central Campus), Des Moines: "The Influence of Japanese Media in America"
  • Second Place: Justin Guan, Valley High School, West Des Moines: "My Changes"
  • Third Place: Amy Peters, Valley High School, West Des Moines: "The People I Admire"

College Level I

  • First Place: Alecs Micunas, University of Iowa: "My Favorite Place"
  • Second Place: Nicholas Gran, University of Nebraska at Omaha: "The Challenge"
  • Third Place: Beth McKiernan, University of Iowa: "My Good Japanese Friend"

College Level II

  • First Place: Violet Wright, Kansas State University: "Lessons From Bugs"
  • Second Place: Hyounkyoung Ji, University of Iowa: "The Memory of Purumi"
  • Third Place: Justin Green, University of Iowa: "Language and the Way One Thinks"

College Level III

  • First Place: Angela Jones, University of Iowa: "The Significance of 2.6. Billion Kilograms"
  • Second Place: Kristin Olson, University of Iowa: "Female Emperor"
  • Third Place: Micah Larson, Kansas State University: "Maybe I'm a Sunflower?"

The contest was supported by the Consulate General of Japan in Chicago, Japan Forum, UI Center for Asian and Pacific Studies, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, and the Department of Asian Languages and Literature.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500.

MEDIA CONTACT: Mary Geraghty Kenyon, 319-384-0011,;