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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 13, 2010
Contact: Matthew Dunlap
207-626-8400

Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap Announces Winners of 2010 Maine Constitution Poster and Essay Contest
Winning artwork and essay available on-line

AUGUSTA - Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap has announced the names of the winners of the 2010 Maine Constitution Poster and Essay Contest. The contest allows Maine students from grades K through 12 to participate by submitting posters or essays reflecting Maine symbols or history, the Maine Constitution or voting and democracy. Dunlap noted, “This contest is always popular due to its appeal to both students and teachers. The wide array of topics represented in submissions attest to the scope of what students are learning about our state and what they are excited to share.”

The poster contest, open to students from Kindergarten to Grade 5, is broken into two age categories. For grades K-3 "Maine State Symbols" are the focus. Third grader Charles Metcalf from Kennebunkport Consolidated School took top honors. For students in grades 4 and 5 the topic is “Maine History”. Fourth grader Skye Lee, also of Kennebunkport Consolidated School, won first place for her rendering of Margaret Chase Smith in honor of her “Declaration of Conscience” speech.

The essay contest is for students in grades 6 through 12. The winner for grades 6 through 8 was 7th grader Shawn Walsh of Acadia Christian School in Trenton. Shawn’s essay is entitled “Praising Maine.” There were no entries in the grades 9 through 12 category this year. Winning students and their class are invited to view the state's original 1820 Constitution at the Maine State Archives in Augusta.

Dunlap thanked educators who included this program in their curriculum. “Participating students demonstrate that they are achieving the objective of familiarizing themselves with Maine history and recognizing the importance of voting and civic engagement.”

Judges for this year’s contest were Argy Nestor, Visual & Performing Arts Specialist, Maine Department of Education; Nina Osier, Director of Records Management, Maine State Archives; and Secretary Dunlap.

To learn more about the program and view winning entries from this year’s contest, visit the Secretary of State’s website: www.maine.gov/sos/kids/student-programs/const_essay.htm.