Peninsula College selects annual English Essay Award winners

Winners of Peninsula College’s 2019 English Essay Award were announced at the college’s June Board of Trustees meeting.

The annual contest, started in 2011, included six winning submissions, with each student receiving $300 provided by the Teorey family and the Peninsula College Foundation. To be eligible, students must be enrolled in an English course at Peninsula College.

Winning submissions include:

1. “Abuela’s Meez” by Rosa Herrera-Orellana

2. “Falling into a Tree” by Michael Nelson

3. “How I Neglected My Daughters’ Financial Education” by Robert Allen

4. “Relevance of African-American History in Baseball to August Wilson’s Fences” by Samuel May

5. “Why Gender Stereotypes are Dangerous and Unnecessary” by Jaden Harris

6. “The Vehicle of my Soul” by Mr. Gonzales

Herrera-Orellana studied in the Medical Assistant Program at Peninsula College. She has been accepted into Central Washington University in hopes of pursuing her BAS in Public Health with a specialization in Sexual Health.

Nelson has been pursuing the expansion and development of both his knowledge and his responsibility by attending pre-nursing classes at PC. It is his goal in life to become as useful a human being as possible by seeking out teachers and instructors who walk a life-supporting path with skill and insight.

Allen, who moved to Port Angeles from Texas in 2018, is an IT specialist with the North Olympic Library System and played guitar and sang professionally for more than 30 years.

May is a first-year Running Start student now pursuing his associate of arts degree. While having had a love for writing since elementary school, he has always viewed it as a mechanism for expressing his interests rather than an interest itself. He is also in the process of completing prerequisite courses for a program to become a radiology technician but still plans to put his writing ability to use as a hobby or in some professional capacity.

One of the winning essays was submitted by an inmate at Clallam Bay Corrections center, Mr. Gonzales, who was enrolled in a Peninsula College English course.

For more information about the award, contact Michael Mills at

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