The CPC presents the winners and finalists of the Voices Matter audio essay contest. Judging was based on content; originality and creativity; delivery; and production value. First-place, second-place, third-place, and three honorable-mention recipients received cash awards of $500 to $50. Delaware Public Media broadcast the top the top three essays on March 15 to 17.
The Line (FIRST PLACE)―Mia Carbone, a sophomore majoring in political science and communication, recalls a class discussion about the contentious Kavanaugh hearings and the trepidation of a lone boy. She considers how ultimately voices can indeed be drowned out.
Shut Up and Listen (SECOND PLACE)―Eric Hastings completes his MPA degree in spring 2019. He examines the lessons learned when people "shut up and listen," why it is important to do so, and why it is dangerous not to listen.
The Word (THIRD PLACE)―Jymere Stillis-Stanford, a junior majoring in mass communication and psychology, remembers a high school experience when he uses his voice to combat ignorance among his non-Black peers.
Politics at the Hostess Station (HONORABLE MENTION)―Christine Colalillo, a junior majoring in political science, recounts an angry confrontation with a customer at work, and the valuable lesson she learns about when and where opinions can be expressed.
The Monster On My Shoulder (HONORABLE MENTION)―Morgan Kolukisa, a junior majoring in English, contemplates the "monster on her shoulder," a metaphor for her identities as a queer woman and as someone who experiences seizures.
How Can I Speak? (HONORABLE MENTION)―Jenna Lee, a senior pursuing a degree in communication, positions herself in a figurative game of tug of war. Should she speak freely or censor herself when she holds a dissenting opinion?
Freedom of Speech for All? (FINALIST)―Allison Delaney, a senior pursuing a degree in mass communication, considers whether freedom of speech is sometimes upheld at the expense of others. Just as it presents a danger for someone to yell fire in a crowded theater for fear of harm, she ponders, surely the use of hateful language also creates a present danger for those at whom the hate is directed.
She's a Feminist (FINALIST)―Delaney DeTitta, a junior majoring in communication, describes her struggles with the label "feminist," which she says has become warped by others into a synonym for misandry. Delaney implores readers to push back against narratives imposed on them by others.
Just Like My Father (FINALIST)―Josh Diehl completed his BA degree in media communication in December 2018. A family tradition inspires him to find his own voice, but it wouldn't be possible without the First Amendment.
When Anti-Semitism Hits Home (FINALIST)―Rachel Stamberg, a junior majoring in communication, shares how recent events make her more hesitant to share her Jewish identity. Coming from a bubble where anti-Semitism was unheard of, she must now confront the fact that the world can be a scary place.