We are pleased to announce the current and previous winners of the First-Year Summer Reading Essay Contest, open to all members of each year’s incoming class. The general topic of the essay is the Illinois Wesleyan University Summer Reading Program selection. Each year students have the opportunity to discuss the selection during New Student Orientation with the university community, take part in programming for the corresponding year’s intellectual theme, listen to the voices of our faculty and staff, and hear the voice of the selection’s author during the President’s Convocation. The discussion stands incomplete without the most important voices of all—our students' voices.

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Award Winners from 2016

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Differences Between Afghan and American Gender Politics: Subtle Versus Blatant Sexism, and Both Their Dangers, Mary Amanda Breeden '20

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Global Feminism: A Comparison of Gender Roles in Afghanistan and the United States, Alexa Letourneau '20

Endless Possibilities Await, Naing Lin Tun '20

Award Winners from 2015

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Still a Jerk, Benjamin Alan Zentner '19

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Between Two Worlds, Emma Marie Haan '19

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The Complexity of Balance, Kathryn Halford '19