2019 Essay Contest Winner Isaiah Sanchez

Joseph Dowdy

CONGRATULATIONS to Our 2019 Essay Contest Scholarship WINNER Isaiah Sanchez!

At our regular meeting on June 6, 2019, we were delighted to receive our two finalists Kailey McNamee from Cabrillo High School and Isaiah Sanchez from Lompoc High School.

Both graduates are enrolled in Allen Hancock College and read their essays for our members and we were really proud of their efforts to enter and to read for us. In addition, both finalists submitted their entries with proof that they had read their essays to their peers for extra points.

We were very happy for Isaiah who was selected by our panel of three judges for his essay which best reflected the theme “What Would I Do If I Were an Odd Fellow?”

2019 Essay Contest Winner Isaiah Sanchez 1

You can read Isaiah’s essay below and think about his ideas. Odd Fellows would welcome a new member like Isaiah and Kailey to help them make the world a better place!

2019 Winning Essay:

"What Would I Do If I Were an Odd Fellow?"

by Isaiah Sanchez

If I were an Odd Fellow, I would start locally in hopes of it spreading nationwide to worldwide in helping others. I would start at the core of many people’s lives which would be education. Schools should be provided with more resources such as psychologists for the mental health of students as well as school supplies for classrooms.

Graduating Lompoc High School, I have realized after two deaths of students this year that a student’s mental health is the foundation to their success. The lack of resources provided makes it hard for students to express their emotions and prevent them from dangerous acts as well as focusing on their academics. The lack of supplies is also an issue that should not be occurring in schools. There should be enough funding for supplies to last all year without teachers having to pay for supplies out of pocket for their students. One thing I would propose would be to go to the district and discuss where funding should go, if that does not work than I would take it upon myself to create a local fund, as to which the community chooses to donate to, in order to raise money for the schools, whether it’s for supplies, activities or even paying off students’ lunch debt.

Resources would have to be a discussion with the district as far as a psychologist goes. Another issue that needs to be tackled would be the amount of litter around not only the world but Lompoc itself. Around town there are large amounts of garbage that need to be cleaned up. One thing that could happen would be volunteer groups to help support the community and take this issue head on. One way to raise funds would be hosting benefit dinners from different members of the community. Local businesses could help out and donate and or provide the dinners in hopes of raising money to purchase the materials needed to clean the city.

Another thing would be to get the children involved, many schools/clubs require community service hours and creating a committee for cleaning up can help the students contact them and earn their hours while helping the community. This committee would clean up at a minimum of once a month for a whole day in hopes of helping beautify the community one step at a time. With the help of Odd Fellows, we can create committees or community funds to help out. Taking a step in this direction can set the tone for many other communities and maybe even form an organization that can be well known worldwide. I have a large amount of ideas and these are some that I find really important. Thank you for your time and giving me this opportunity for your scholarship.

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