• Oct. 10, 2023

    8th grader named essay contest top winner

    Suhavi SinghUpper St. Clair eighth grader Suhavi Singh was named a top winner in the annual Creative Writing and Arts Contest, part of the 2023 Mahatma Gandhi Birthday Celebration, on Sunday, Oct. 8, 2023, at Carnegie Mellon University. The event was organized by the Alliance for Humanitarian Initiatives, Nonviolence & Spiritual Advancement (AHINSA) in partnership with Center for Student Diversity and Inclusion at CMU.

    This marked Suhavi’s third time earning recognition in the Gandhi Creative Writing and Art Contest. She was among the top winners in 2020 and in 2022.

    “What separates Suhavi is her ability to personalize Gandhi's words and wisdom. She uses poignant examples from her own life and experiences within our community to illustrate empathy and understanding,” Thomas Yochum, gifted education teacher at Fort Couch Middle School, said. “For the committee to continually recognize this is a testament to the power of her writing.”

    The contest is organized into three divisions – grades 3-5, grades 6-8, and grades 9-12. The top three in each division received a check for $250 along with a certificate.

    The theme for this year’s contest was, “Promoting Non-Violence through Spirituality: Lessons from Gandhi and Martin Luther King, Jr.” The students in the 6-8 division were tasked with writing an essay, poetry, or musical composition that represents Gandhi’s and MLK, Jr.’s belief that through spirituality and working together, different religions can promote non-violence.

    In addition to Suhavi, the other top winners in the grades 6-8 division included Rebecca Gielen, North Hills Middle School, and Rhythm Srivastava, Mars Area School District.