San Tan Valley Think Tank announces theme for 2015 Scholastic Speech and Essay Contest

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Southeast Valley Ledger

The annual San Tan Think Tank Scholastic Speech and Essay Contest is an event that students and parents in Pinal County look forward to every year. The contest is a wonderful opportunity for students to learn and earn cash and scholarship money for classes at Central Arizona College.

The theme for this year’s contest was chosen by Think Tank members and was recently announced as “Why should the Arts be added to STEM?” STEM is the abbreviation for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.

To enter the contest, students will be required to research and write an essay paper that answers the theme question. In addition, high school students will be able to choose to participate in the speech portion of the contest.

The contest is a two step process. Each student will be evaluated by the school they attend and only the top three essays will be submitted for final judging. If the student’s essay is chosen as a finalist, and if they are attending high school, each finalist will be required to present the speech to a panel of judges.

Students from across Pinal County in grades sixth through 12th are encouraged to participate. Essays and speeches that directly answer the theme question and give detailed research, examples and ideas usually do better than generic essays. Originality and creativity are also important. Each essay and speech must be the student’s own writing and ideas.

The San Tan Valley Think Tank Contest will also be a part of the Arizona SciTech Festival in February 2015. This is the second year that a speech component has been included in the contest and it holds an additional opportunity for high school students to win an additional money for college classes.

Deadline to enter the speech and essay contest is set for Friday, Jan. 23, 2015.

The essay contest is open to both middle and high school students, high school and middle school students will be judged separately.

Students may enter by visiting and filling out a registration form which will need to be signed by the student and student’s teacher. For more information, contact the Think Tank via email at

First, second and third place and honorable mentions will be awarded.

Bridgette Crosby (129 Posts)

Bridgette Crosby is a contributing writer to the Southeast Valley Ledger.

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