Essay Contest

       Essay Contest 2016 Information

          “Lead by Example: Reality or Fiction “

 The deadline for submissions is Wednesday, February 17th

The Optimist Club of Washington is encouraging area students to contemplate the phrase “Lead by Example: Reality or Fiction” as part of the Optimist International Essay Contest for 2016. The Optimist club will judge the local students’ essays based on the theme of “Lead by Example: Reality or Fiction” and determine the top winner. The winner will receive a $250 award from the club and the winning essay will be sent to the district level where additional college scholarships up to $2,500 are available for top winners.

“Young students today have so many fresh ideas about the world and their future,” essay contest chair Janice LaBarbera said. “As Optimists, it is our goal to encourage them and do what we can to bring out the best in each of them. This gives them a wonderful opportunity to tap into their creativity and pursue possible scholarships at the same time.”

The Optimist Club of Washington has been participating in the Optimist Essay Contest for over 10 years and has been active in the community since 1975. Other programs and service projects that the Club is involved in include organizing the Washington Soccer League, Castle Soccer, sponsoring local teams for football, baseball, basketball and softball, supporting local scouts, the Boys and Girls Home of Lake Waccamaw, and providing annual scholarships to local high school seniors.

Optimist International is one of the world’s largest service club organizations with 75,000 adult and youth members in 2,600 clubs in the United States, Canada, the Caribbean and Mexico and throughout the world. Carrying the motto “Bringing Out the Best in Kids,” Optimists conduct positive service projects that reach more than six million young people each year. To learn more about Optimist International, please visit

  • Click here: Essay to download the application form and instructions.
  • You must return the application postmarked by the deadline to be eligible!
  • Any questions, contact Janice LaBarbera    252-402-6699      

Mail Essays to Janice LaBarbera, 120 Hillcrest Drive, Washington, NC  27889


   Congratulations to our 2015 Winner

William Page

Congratulations to our 2012 Essay Winner

Lee Pinkham

The 2010 Essay Contest winner was Janie Page.

The 2009 Essay Contest winner was Jenna Buck. She also placed 2nd at the district level!

If you would like more information on the Essay Contest, please email