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World Affairs Council Seattle Essay Contest For High School

Read: 2017 World Citizen Essays

Posted on May 5, 2017 in Global Classroom

Grades 3-5

A Vacation for the Earth by Cameron Trichel, 5th grade, Somerset Elementary School

Visiting my Favorite Place—Bhutan by Anish Sharma, 3rd grade, Bellevue Children’s Academy

A Trip to Japan by Audrey Smith, 5th grade, Bryant Elementary School

Grades 6-8

Exploring Guatemala: An Example of Sustainable Travel in Central America by Katie Kotler, 8th grade, International Community School

Sustainable Tourism: The Future of Easter Island by Madeleine Goertz, 8th grade, International Community School

Simple and Effective Ways to Become a Sustainable Tourist by Celeste Zinmon-Htet, 7th grade, Hamilton International Middle School

Grades 9-12

Paving the Road for Sustainable Tourism in Lombok by Rebekah Huber, 11th grade, Colfax High School

In Honor of Opa: Travel to the Netherlands by Ellie Roza, 11th grade, Lakeside High School

Cycling the Ring by Kaisa Nordal-Jonsson, 12th grade, Science and Math Institute




The World Affairs Council is thrilled to host KING-TV’s Margaret Larson as our keynote speaker for the 16th annual World Citizen Essay Contest and World Educator Award Ceremony. Margaret will share her experience as a broadcast journalist and foreign correspondent and highlight the importance of an informed and engaged global citizenry.

As part of this special evening we will honor our 2014-15 World Educator award recipient, Brandon Frederick. Brandon is a social studies teacher and outstanding global educator at Bonney Lake High School in the Sumner school district and was chosen based on several nominations from his colleagues and students.  

Finally we will salute nine Washington State students in grades 3 through 12 for their award-winning essays in response to the following prompt: In our increasingly interconnected world, it is important to be informed of issues and events around the globe in order to better understand and engage with the people around us. If you were a foreign news correspondent, where would you like to be assigned? What story would you cover and how would you gather the necessary information? Why do you think this is an important story to tell? Student winners will read a short excerpt from their essays and awards  will be presented by Margaret Larson. 

Please join our community in celebrating the tremendous work of local students and an outstanding educator.

Margaret Larson

For more than twenty five years, Margaret Larson worked as a broadcast journalist, most notably with NBC News as a foreign correspondent based in London, news anchor for the Today show, and Dateline NBC reporter, and as a reporter/news anchor at KING-TV in Seattle. During the Kurdish refugee crisis in southern Turkey at the end of the first Persian Gulf War, she began reporting on global humanitarian crises. What she learned and experienced changed her outlook, her career and her life. In 2003, she formed a communications consulting practice for international nonprofit organizations including World Vision, Mercy Corps, PATH and Global Partnerships, creating videos and online content to serve humanitarian causes. Her aid-related work has taken her to southern Lebanon, the Kosovo crisis, Afghan refugee camps one week after the launch of the US bombardment, the most recent Iraq ground war, the South Asian tsunami and its one-year anniversary, the depths of the African AIDS pandemic, maternal/child health programs in India and Asia, and the child soldier crisis in northern Uganda.

Larson has won broadcast journalism awards including four Emmys, two national Clarion awards, three Telly awards and a national Society of Professional Journalists award. In 2004, she received the national Headliner Award from the Association of Women in Communication*. In 2005, she was named “Best Voice for Humanitarianism” by the Seattle Weekly newspaper. In 2007, she was selected for the Women of Vision award by the “Women Work!” organization in Washington D.C. And in 2008, she was chosen to create the profile videos for the global humanitarian Opus Prize awardees in Nicaragua, India, and Burundi.

Brandon Frederick

Brandon is a social studies teacher at Bonney Lake High School in Sumner, WA. He has been teaching social studies for over 15 years and currently teaches AP Human Geography, AP US History, and AP Government and Politics. Brandon demonstrates a deep investment in educating students about world affairs and promoting cultural understanding in and out of the classroom. Brandon also implemented an annual event at his high school called the International Economic Summit through training he received at the Idaho Council on Economic Education and the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco. This Summit involves about 200 high school seniors each year, divided into country teams, and competing in a giant trade simulation. Students dress up, cook food, negotiate alliances and trade pacts, and discuss global issue statements. Brandon now oversees this Summit at two high schools. In addition, Brandon succeeded in bringing Advanced Placement (AP) Geography classes to Bonney Lake High School and attends AP Readings in June to score AP exams. He has also served as the Social Studies department chair, is on the literacy committee, and is seen as a leader by staff and students alike. Brandon is also a participant in the World Affairs Council Fellows Program. 

Please note: All essay contest student participants are invited to attend the event free of charge. Please email Amy at alutterloh@world-affairs.org to claim your ticket. Seattle Central College students are invited to register at the member level. 

Hosted by Seattle Central College



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