West Virginia State Treasurer’s Office representative Jenny Jebbia presented a $500 check to Woodsdale Elementary School in Ohio County, as part of the tenth annual SMART529 When I Grow Up essay contest.
Fifth grade student Rachel Edinger is one of 15 regional winners. As a result, her school received a $500 cash award. In the past, winning schools have used the money to buy new equipment, offer learning incentives or reward students.
Edinger was also recognized for her award-winning essay. She wrote about becoming an interior designer when she grows up.
“Every year I’m surprised and impressed by the students’ career choices and their ability to describe their goals at a young age,” said West Virginia State Treasurer John Perdue.
Each essay contest winner will receive $500 invested into a SMART529 college savings plan and will be recognized at a statewide awards ceremony in Charleston in September. At that time, each student will be entered into a random drawing for a chance to win the grand prize, a total of $5,000 invested into a SMART529 account.
More than 3,200 students in kindergarten through fifth grade participated in this year’s contest. The winning entries were selected by an independent panel of judges based on originality, creativity and the importance of post-secondary education.
“These days, education beyond high school is an essential part of ensuring a child’s success,” said Treasurer Perdue. “This contest is a great opportunity for parents to grow their child’s college fund and teach their children about the importance of saving for higher education.”
SMART529 is a qualified tuition program issued by the West Virginia College Prepaid Tuition and Savings Program Board of Trustees and administered by The Hartford.
For more information on the contest, log onto SMART529.com