Grace Lu, an honor student at Essex High School, has been selected for a 2018 Achievement Award in Writing, given by the National Council of Teachers of English.

The NCTE Achievement Award in Writing is a school-based writing program established in 1957 to encourage high school students to write and to recognize some of the best student writers in the nation. Only students who are juniors may participate. Schools in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Canada, American schools abroad, and the Virgin Islands are eligible to nominate students for the writing program.

Lu is the 21st EHS student to win the contest, dating back to 1974. She is a violinist with the Vermont Youth Orchestra, and a member of the EHS Red Cross Club, the Math League, and the school’s state championship Scholars’ Bowl team. She plans to pursue a career in medicine.

She is the daughter of Ning Lu and Feipeng Huang of Essex Junction.

“Grace is always prepared to learn,” said her AP English teacher, Owen Charron. “She’s the type of student a teacher loves to have in class: curious, inquisitive, intelligent and funny. She possesses a distinct personal voice in her writing and imbues all she creates with imaginative brush strokes and an ear for the music inherent in language.”

This year, schools nominated 462 students. Of that number, 227 received Certificates of Superior Writing and 235 received Certificates of Nomination. Each student submitted two pieces of writing. Two independent judges scored each submission on expression of ideas, language use, and unique perspective and voice.

The NCTE is the nation’s most comprehensive literacy organization, supporting more than 25,000 teachers across the preK–college spectrum.

Through the expertise of its members, NCTE has served at the forefront of every major improvement in the teaching and learning of English and the language arts since 1911.