First Coast 7th Grader Wins National “Eye Witness to History” Contest | People
In a recent announcement by Current Events Magazine, First Coast 7th grader, Katie Hecht, from Lavilla School of the Arts, was named the grand-prize winner of the 2011 national, “Eye Witness to History” contest for her interview with local, former Lost Boy- of – Sudan, John Kuai.
Link: Current Events Magazine - "On The Run"
In her interview with Mr. Kuai, Ms. Hecht asks him about his life, as a child, separated from his parents during the civil war between north and south Sudan, left to fend for himself while walking over a thousand miles across dangerous Africa terrain and living in numerous refugee camps. “The journey was very difficult,” says Mr. Kuai. “It lasted for almost three months and it was the longest journey I’ve ever traveled. I didn’t think I would make it. There were moments when I refused to walk. It was my uncle who kept me walking, but it was God who kept me alive.”
Ms. Hecht’s interview with, John Kuai, will run in Issue 24 of Current Events, dated May 9, 2011, with a print circulation of 220,000 (middle and high school students), not including the total reach for readers.
“Students like Katie don’t just write to be done with a class assignment. They write because they cannot imagine their lives without it. Katie understands that the job of a writer is to communicate and she does this immensely well on a number of levels,” said Mrs. Cheryl B. Lemine, LaVilla Creative Writing Department’s expository writing teacher.