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Writing South Carolina Volume 10

The Honors College is proud to showcase selections from the 10th annual South Carolina High School Writing Contest. Featuring submissions from high school juniors and seniors from across the state, the works are edited by Honors students from our SCHC 384 course.

Bright and strong, the tall goldenrod is South Carolina’s state wildflower. We think Solidago altissima also represents our state’s best young writers. Here are 19 of them, each of whom composed an original response to our annual question, “How can we make South Carolina better?” Read on and take heart. These writers are bright and strong indeed.  


First Place: Eulogy for the Fireflies - Elliott Kate Cooper  

Second Place: Ask Yourself - Kat Davis

Third Place: Great Expectations - Yana Johnson

Honorable Mention:  Fairforest Creek  - Merrik Moriarty

Argumentative Essays

Our Generation: Seeds of Hope for South Carolina’s Future - Sarah Campbell Brown 

Where are the Blue Bins?  - Sophia Conner 

One Clinical Word - Mylah Mathis

The Censorship of Freedom - Hannah Mitchell 

Personal Essays

Signed Up for Failure - Elliott Braghirol 

Lamenting Lost Mothers - Ariel Byrnside 

The Mistakes South Carolina Makes When it Comes to Mental Health - Ashleigh Howard 

Our Neglected Fears - Aseel Ibrahim 

Thursday Morning Math Class  - Jaimie Park 


Lines - Grace Davisson

This Place that I Call Home - Madison Graham 

It was just a drill - Rebecca Norton-Baker  

Dear Rosie - Shyla Phillips 

Because Reading is, What? Fundamental. - Liam Quan 

Short Stories

The Man and the Wall - Logan Morgan 


The annual South Carolina High School Writing Contest wouldn’t be possible without other individuals and organizations. We thank South Carolina Honors College alumnus Thad Westbrook, the Pat Conroy Literary Center (Jonathan Haupt, executive director); the South Carolina State Library (Leesa Aiken, director); South Carolina Academy of Authors  (Marybeth Evans, chair); and the South Carolina Writers Association (Kasie Whitener, president). We also thank Ron Rash, grand judge for this year’s contest, and the many high school guidance counselors and teachers who encouraged students to submit. The students in the fall 2022 semester of SCHC 384, Finding Your Voice: Writing and Editing for Life, were the first editors of volume 10. They are Eric Beck, Peter Caldwell, Wyatt Carhart, Colton Creighton, Georgia DiVisconti, Maggie Gordon, Tori Grenier, Erin Jacoby, Cody King, Jamison Levine, Ella Lukowiak, Sydney McKenzie, Sophia Milliner, Claire Smith, Natalie Truman, Sophie Verzyl and McKenzie Wood.  

Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.