D.C. -- David Epstein, a junior at Pikesville
High School in Pikesville, Maryland., has won
the 2001-2002 National Peace Essay Contest, the
U.S. Institute of Peace announced today.
essay, entitled "Safeguarding Human Rights
and Preventing Conflict through U.S. Peacekeeping,"
was judged to be the best of more than 1,200 entries
received from high school students in 48 states,
the District of Columbia, U.S. territories and
the national winner, David will receive $10,000
in scholarship money from the U.S. Institute of
Peace. The second- and third-place winners, who
will receive $5,000 and $2,500 respectively, are
Prabhu Balasubramanian of Winter Park High School
in Winter Park, Florida, and Peter Christodoulou
of Stuyvesant High School in New York, New York.
Institute has sponsored the contest annually since
1986 in the belief that expanding the study of
peace, justice, freedom and security is vital
to civic education. This year, entrants were asked
to write essays of 1,500 words or fewer on the
U.S. military's role in international peacekeeping.
McLean, a member of the Institute's Board of Directors
and a member of the panel that judged the contest,
said David "did the best at citing a wide
array of examples-historic and current-of some
tough decisions that the U.S. has had to make."
researched and wrote his essay with the guidance
of Martr Hotz, Pikesville High School's essay
for all the 1,200-plus submissions, the judges
were "heartened that young people could produce
essays of such high quality," said McLean,
President of the Africa-America Institute in New
has just completed his junior year at Pikesville.
He is President of the Science Club, a member
of the "It's Academic" TV team, the
National Honor Society, and the Model United Nations
club. David has spent many hours giving volunteer
lectures at inner city middle schools in Baltimore,
discussing the dangers of drug abuse. The lecture
series evolved after David spent a summer at the
Maryland Medical Examiner's Office. In addition
to being interested in science and medicine, David
enjoys learning about international relations
and political science.
challenges of making a durable peace in today's
violent international conflicts are some of the
most complicated foreign policy problems facing
the U.S. today," said Pamela Aall, Director
of the Institute's Education Program. "Through
the essay contest, students not only analyze what
these challenges are, but they also design policies
that can help."