In 2013 and 2014, the Lake Oswego Preservation Society, in partnership with the Lake Oswego Public Library, presented two annual historic preservation high school essay contests.
The purpose of the contest was to encourage high school students residing in Lake Oswego to recognize our community’s unique history, to develop an appreciation of that history, and to promote the benefits of historic preservation. It was also designed to encourage use of the resources of the Lake Oswego Public Library’s local history collection.
Scholarships for the three best essays were generously funded by The Bank of Oswego:
1st place: $500.00
2nd place: $250.00
3rd place: $125.00
The judges panel was made up of prominent members the community:
Kent Studebaker, Mayor of Lake Oswego
Bridget Smith, Vice President Marketing & Administration, The Bank of Oswego
Brian Doyle, Award-winning author
Ricky Korach, Lake Oswego High School English teacher (retired)
Bill Baars, Lake Oswego Public Library Director
In the guidelines for the 1,000 word essay, students were asked to explain why preserving a building matters and how it would benefit our community. It was suggested that interested students watch the documentary, “The Greenest Building” and the Society donated a copy of this DVD to the Lake Oswego Public Library for this purpose.
An awards ceremony, which included students, their family, the school principals, and the judges, was held to announce the winners and the story was covered by the Lake Oswego Review.
In spite of all of these efforts, generous scholarships, and outreach to Lake Oswego high school students, the number of essays submitted was few.
Redesign of this contest to expand the grade levels and the types of submissions to include other media is currently underway. It is expected that this new contest will be launched in 2016.