This sixth-grader is the only student from Madison County vying for award
Sixth-grader Molly Barber’s essay about her brother told in the first-person is one of just 18 selected for the final round in a contest for grade 6-8 students in 22 counties in Central Ohio.

The Laws of Life program, sponsored by the region’s Better Business Bureau, encourages participants to write from the heart. The character-themed competition challenges students to discover through writing and reflection what matters most to them in their lives.

Among the roughly 1,300 essays, 97 were submitted to the contest and 53 were named semi-finalists.

Molly, a student in Morgan’s Gaus language arts class at Madison-Plains Intermediate and the only student from Madison County to be named a finalist, wrote about the importance of being honest and expressing feelings in telling the story about her brother’s broken arm. Classmate Kristin Eades was a semi-finalist.

"I look at his struggles as a way of connection toward us,” she said. "I am always looking at the essay and trying to think of ways I would have handled it differently.”

All finalists will be honored at a banquet on May 16 at the Wendy’s Company World headquarters in Dublin, Ohio. Winners of cash prizes will be announced in seven overall categories and for first through third places at each grade level.

While she said she isn’t sure she would have handled her brother's situation in an other way, she did have a unique approach her contest entry.

"The first thing that I had in my mind to do with my essay was to be original,” she said. I looked at the stories from the previous year and I realized that there wasn't an entry that was in another person's perspective. So, that is what I wanted to do.”

Cash prizes are available for best essay by a female (and male) and for best theme. Schools and teachers of finalists will receive gift cards in appreciation of their efforts.

More information about the contest is available here
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