Valerie Light ’22 wins top prize in Lab Girl essay contest

Many first-year students added Lab Girl to their reading lists this summer. As the 2018 Common Reader, this book by Hope Jahren was discussed in First Year Seminar classes, and on September 25th a faculty panel discussion took place in Mitchell Hall. To increase readership, the First Year Experience office hosts an essay contest which any first-year student can enter, and many of the top awards were swept up by Honors Program students! First place was awarded to Valerie Light, an Honors Communication Interest major from Marietta, GA. Val wrote a very personal essay, detailing her transition from Southern life to Delaware, and how this big move becomes easier and easier every day. Val said, “I am so grateful that I chose this school because, as highlighted in Lab Girl, following my passion will propel me through any setbacks and ensure that I live a meaningful life.” Congratulations to all of the winners of the Lab Girl Essay Contest!

In addition to Valerie’s first place essay, several Honors students took home awards.

  • Second place: Liam Festa, New York, NY
  • Third place: Samantha Baron, San Jose, CA
  • Fourth place: Hannah Braun, Huntington Station, NY
  • Honorable Mention: Kyra Giakas, Newark, DE

To read all of the winning essays, visit the First Year Experience website, here: 

Story by Kiersten Harris ’20