2018 YAA Awards
FIRST PRIZE: $800 , sponsored by the Simonetti Trust was awarded to
Rory Rautter, New Fairfield High School
SECOND PRIZE: $500, sponsored by the Cole Family Scholarship was awarded to
Drew Newcomb, Fairfield College Preparatory School
THIRD PRIZE: $200, sponsored by COL Serge Gabriel, USA (Ret) and LT Michael Riffice, USN was awarded to
Drew Durkin, Green Farms Academy
Awardee scholarships of $100 each were sponsored by the WCMOA membership.
2018 YAA Winning Essays
Greg Jazwinski – Saint Joseph High School, Trumbull
A private American organization should implement a policy mandating their employees to stand during the anthem. By doing so, the employee, (whether it is a U.S. citizen or alien), will have the opportunity to reflect on how this country affords so many rights and freedoms to employees that rarely exist in other countries. This moment of reflection allows the employee to be grateful for the company that offers the employment, while realizing the local, state, and federal governments allow companies to prosper here in an open market economy in a way that is much more secure and stable than economies in other countries.
Employees who have never worked in other countries take it for granted that the infrastructure existing in this country is more effective and stable than anywhere else. The commutes to work, the public utilities that provide water, sewer, and electricity services to offices, and the abundance of stores in every community allow a worker to have a more satisfying place of employment than anywhere else. The balance of having just enough government to keep our country safe and secure, while not being so intrusive to an employer’s ability to provide a service to customers and employment of others, is what makes this country great. If an employee chooses to kneel or turn away during the anthem, perhaps the employer can have the employee watch videos of an average day for employees attempting to work in North Korea, Syria, or Afghanistan.
Kelan Smith – Shelton High School
Anika Veeraraghav – Masuk High School, Monroe
Jack Murphy – Fairfield Warde High School