South Florida Student Wins Third Place in National Writing Competition on Immigration

Share Article

After winning the qualifying regional competition sponsored by AILA South Florida, local student Olga Rocio Rivas took third place in the national Celebrate America Fifth Grade Creative Writing Contest. This competition encourages youth to discuss why they are glad America is a nation of immigrants in their own unique voice and writing style.

News Image
We congratulate Olga Rocio Rivas for her placing nationally in the Celebrate America contest with her wonderful piece on the importance of immigration to America.

South Florida fifth grader Olga Rocio Rivas has won third place in the national Celebrate America Fifth Grade Creative Writing Contest with her piece entitled “America Believes.” Sponsored nationally by the American Immigration Council (AIC) and locally by the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) South Florida Chapter, the contest encourages students to express why they are glad America is a nation of immigrants. This is the second year that South Florida’s regional winner has placed nationally, with Miami’s Charlotte Leigh taking the 2014 Grand Prize.

Rivas is a student at Carrollton School of the Sacred Heart in Miami. In recognition of her accomplishment, a flag will be flown over the U.S. Capitol in her honor, and her inspiring piece will be published in Skipping Stones Magazine.

Essays entered into the national competition were reviewed by a formidable panel of renowned judges including founder of Citizen Counts Gerda Weissman-Klein, author and National Book Award finalist Edwidge Danticat, Minister of Education in South Sudan Valentino Achak Deng, and 2014 Grand Prize Winner Charlotte Leigh.

Earlier this year, Rivas won first place in the annual regional contest sponsored by AILA South Florida, which entered her piece in the national competition. Dozens of South Florida schools competed in the regional contest, which provides young students with the opportunity to express the importance of diversity, the challenges and benefits of immigration, and share their own personal immigration experience or family history in their own unique and individual voice.

Second and third place winners of the regional contest were also from Carrollton School of the Sacred Heart. Torivia Castro took second place with her "In The Land of Tomorrow" piece, while Alexandra Dominguez placed third with her "Untitled" entry. The three students will be honored at an upcoming AILA South Florida luncheon tomorrow, May 20, where they will each present their winning entries.

AILA South Florida encourages local schools and teachers to include this contest as they plan their curriculums for the upcoming school year.

“We congratulate Olga Rocio Rivas for her placing nationally in the Celebrate America contest with her wonderful piece on the importance of immigration to America,” said AILA South Florida President Jacob Ratzan. “Our local competition received an incredible number of wonderful and insightful entries, and it’s a remarkable honor to once again have South Florida represented among the national winners.”

To learn more about the national Celebrate America Fifth Grade Creative Writing Contest, please visit http://www.celebrateamericawritingcontest.org/.

About AILA South Florida

AILA South Florida is one of the largest and most respected chapters of the national American Immigration Lawyers Association. AILA South Florida attorneys work hard to facilitate the administration of justice for immigrants in our legal system. Our membership is well-versed in all aspects of immigration law. We promote positive reforms in immigration and nationality laws, and our members elevate the standards of integrity, honor, and courtesy both in and outside of the courtroom. Learn more at http://www.ailasouthflorida.org.

Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Pamela Armstrong
AILA South Florida
+1 (954) 379-2115 Ext: 403
Email >
@AILASoFlorida
since: 08/2013
Follow >
AILA South Florida
Like >
AILA South Florida

Visit website