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  • America & Me Essay Contest

  • Farm Bureau Insurance America & Me Essay Contest
  • Winners of the 49th annual America & Me Essay Contest for Michigan Eighth Graders

    Farm Bureau Insurance of Michigan is pleased to announce the 10 statewide winners of the 2017-'18 America and Me Essay Contest. As Michigan's Insurance Company, we proudly salute these outstanding Michigan students. This year's winners competed against over 6,000 other students from over 350 Michigan junior highs and middle schools.

    The student essays for this, the 49th annual contest, were based on the topic, "My Personal Michigan Hero." The final ranking of the winners was determined by a panel of judges comprised of Farm Bureau Insurance's CEO Jim Robinson; contest founder Jack Stucko; and two teachers of from top ten statewide school winners from the 2016-'17 contest year.

    The America & Me Essay Contest was founded by Farm Bureau Insurance in 1968 to encourage Michigan youth to explore their roles in America's future. Since then, we have shifted our focus slightly to encourage students to write about their personal Michigan heroes–someone they know personally who encouraged and inspired them to live better and achieve more. Since its inception, over 500,000 Michigan 8th graders have participated in the contest.

    This year's recipients will each receive a plaque, medallion, and a cash award of $1,000 at an awards banquet in Lansing on Tuesday, May 15, 2018. In addition, finalists will meet with state government leaders, be honored at Cooley Law School Stadium as special guests at a Lansing Lugnuts minor league baseball game, and enjoy a luncheon cruise aboard the Michigan Princess Riverboat on Lansing's Grand River.

    Here are the statewide winners, their final rankings, and the name of students' respective schools. Five of the schools were sponsored by Farm Bureau Insurance agents, who are also listed.

    First Place: William Cameron, St. Edith School, Livonia  
    Second Place: Nazim Ali, Grand Blanc West Middle School, Grand Blanc  
    Third Place: Carleigh Rodriguez, Oxford Middle School, Oxford
    Agent Sponsor: Rich Dagenais
    Fourth Place: Keri Fluit, Plymouth Christian High School, Grand Rapids  
    Fifth Place: Grace Fyke, Parker Middle School, Howell
    Agent Sponsor: Joe Gabriele
    Sixth Place: Adelaide Felgner, Berrien Springs Middle School, Berrien Springs
    Agent Sponsor: Marty Rudlaff
    Seventh Place: Sylva Das, Rulolf Steiner School of Ann Arbor, Ann Arbor  
    Eighth Place: Alandra Hess, Pittsford Area Schools, Pittsford  
    Ninth Place: Caroline Neihoff, East Rockford Middle School, Rockford
    Agent Sponsor: Kelly Obenauf
    Tenth Place: Nicholas Vanlerberghe, Brown City Jr/Sr High School, Brown City
    Agent Sponsor: Bill Angerbrandt


    To read this year’s winning essays, click here.

    The next contest begins September 2018.

    Information will be mailed out to all middle schools and junior highs in Michigan and available on our website.



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