Core Writing Awards

The Oakes Core Writing Awards honor the strongest essays written in each section of the Oakes Core Course. Oakes College is proud to recognize the hard work, exemplary critical thinking, and outstanding writing displayed by the student writers of the winning essays. Oakes College would like to acknowledge and appreciate the winners of the Oakes Core Writing Awards for their commitment to writing, their dedication to the values of Oakes College, and their engagement in the Oakes Core materials this quarter.

We especially want to commend the Oakes Core Writing Award authors in honor of the late Don Rothman, beloved writing teacher, former Oakes Provost, and founding member of Oakes College, who inspired the Oakes Core Writing Awards with his noteworthy commitment to recognize first-year achievement in writing.  Don often said “We write to avoid the humiliation of silence in the face of cruelty and injustice,” and we know he would have been overjoyed to read these remarkable essays.

All first-year students are encouraged to submit their essays in May to the campus-wide Rothman Writing Award.

Fall 2017 Core Writing Award Winners:

80A-02: Hector Carvajal, "Defined by Small Actions"

80A-05: Rose Micallef, "Gender and Sexuality in "Friends""

80A-06: Jingtong Huang, "An Unhealthy Learning Environment"

80A-07: Sarah Cain, "Societal Norms Will Never Be Fetch"

80A-16: Daisjah Sheperd, "Educating Hope"

80A-18: Ruth Altamirano, "Racism is Still a "Thing""

80A-19: Alma Hidalgo, "The Subjugation of American Students"

80A-20: Claire Williams, "The Injustices of Justice"

80A-22: Victor Cime, "Boys, Men, and Children of the Hood: The Violence They Perpetuate"

80A-24: Niharah Shillingford, untitled

80B-01: Citlalli Aparicio, "Monahuatiltzin Momaquixtia"

80B-02: Jasmine​ ​Djavahery, "Mama's Boy Mentality"

80B-03: Sierra Parker, "Knowledge is Power: Understanding the Institutionalization of Information"

80B-04: Diego Leon De Jesus, "What it means to be a part of American Culture: Values, Media, Violence, and my Mexican immigrant experience"

80C-01: Alexander Juarez, "The True Purpose of Masculinity"

80C-02: Kristin Collins, "Wealthily Content"


Fall 2016 Core Writing Award Winners:

80A-01: Sawyer Gilley, "Awakening Guilt"

80A-02: Nikolas Rolon, "Oppression in Education: Perpetuating the Hierarchy"

80A-05: Lexi Saelua, "Analysis of the Education System"

80A-06: Viridiana Silva Mercado, "Gender Roles"

80A-16: Yasmine Rodriguez, "Oppressive Roots and Liberating Ideals: Dismantling Education With Education"

80A-17: Jenna Myracle, "Bridging the Divide: Social Justice and Understanding Differences Through Writing"

80A-18: Lucia Martino

80A-19: Carolina Garcia, "Voice in Education"

80A-20: Emily Lam, "Education is the Problem and the Solution"

80A-23: Christina Henson-Carlisle, "Might As Well Be a Trophy Wife"

80B-01: JR Caprile, "What's in a Man?"

80B-02: Zoe Grace Carrell, "Letter to Jared Huffman"

80B-03: Valeria Paredes, "Trump's Election"

80C-01: Patricia Rosendo

80C-02: Melissa Santiago-Felix, "The Misrepresentation of Latinas in the Media"

80C-03: Ti-Lin (Michael) Fu, "Infographic: The Color of Justice"


Fall 2015 Core Writing Award Winners:

80A-01: Jeremiah Rojas, "“Normality” of the Situation"

80A-02: Mattiana Lang, "Intersectionality"

80A-03: Shmar Williams, "How It Feels To Be Forced Into Nonexistence"

80A-16: Ajani Thompson, "Racial Ideals Becoming Racial Reality"

80A-17: Divya Ramani, "Keep Race Relevant: Modifying Methods of Advocacy"

80A-18: Jeje Kaur, "Another Way to Understand Race, Gender, and Social Status"

80A-19: Dan-Linh Le, "Identifying identity"

80A-20: Taylor Dinwiddie, "Normal Exists in the Time You Live"

80B-02: Summer Al-Saleh, "Oppression is Necrophilic"

80B-03: Corinna Sanabia, "The Importance of Intersex Activism"

80C-01: Mahagony Broxton, "Coming to Voice About Social Inequality"

80C-02: Perla Anguino, "The Examination of a New Border: The Separation of Two Communities in San Gabriel Valley"

80C-03: Christy La, "The Consequences of an Ex-Prisoner"

80C-04: Mayra Trejo, "The Effects of Mass Incarceration in the United States"


Fall 2014 Core Writing Award Winners:

80A-01: Jemerson Macalino, “How to Set Kids Free”

80A-02: Jeremiah Lopez, “My Own Gender Identity”

80A-03: Sharon Ostrer, “Eating My Way Towards Strength”

80A-04: Maria Jerezano, “Different SC, Different Me”

80A-16: Itzamar Carmona Felipe, “The Complexity of American ‘Criminals’: Racial Formation as Resistance”

80A-17: Jasmine Mizrahi, “Generation Z: The Rebirth of Critical Thinkers and Conscious Beings”

80A-18: Andre Arnold, “The Crime Not Stated In Our Constitution”

80A-20: Danielle Guardado, “Too Aggressive, Too Sensitive, Too Angry”

80A-21: Alondra Jaime, “Bigger than Myself”

80B-01: Satveer Kler, “Visibility: A Double-Edged Sword”

80B-02: Erin Strubbe, “Letter To My Only Brother, And To Kids Who Aren’t Quite Kids Anymore”

80B-03: Kenny Tien, “Invisibility of Bisexuality”

80C-01: Jacqueline Bolivar, “?”

80C-02: Griselda Avalos, “Latina? Yes! Maria? No!”

80C-03: María Alcantara Omela, “The Criminal Justice System as a Social Problem, Not a Resolution”

80C-04: Yoselin Machado, “Some Child Left Behind: Privilege with the Educational System”


Fall 2013 Oakes Core Writing Award winners:

80A-01: Mikayla Afuola, "The Puppets of Emasculation"

80A-02: Kelssie Sontay, "El Hombre de la Casa"

80A-03: Erin Powless, "Is Colorblindness a Progress Toward Equality?"

80A-04: Zayana Ross, "Exclusion of Race: Mission Impossible"

80A-16: Masuda Sharifi:  “Cowry Reflection”

80A-17: Danielle Williams:  “Identity Thief”

80A-18: Josh Stefanson, "Crime Falls, Inequality Rises"

80A-19: Miguel Giron: “Constructing Myself”

80B-01: Tanner Rose, "The Hidden Minority" 

80B-02: Maria Lemus, "The Power of the Nine Digits"

80C-01: Quincy Okobui, "The Facade of Masculinity"

80C-02: Yesenia Rivera, "Society's Views on 'The Social Construction of Gender' and 'Racial Formation'"

80C-03: Romaldo Lopez, "Unseen Man"

80C-04: Lingyi "Lydia" Cao, "Amexicans in Echo Park"


Fall 2012 Oakes Core Writing Award winners:

80A-01: Brittany Jackson, “Who’s to Say What’s Right?”

80A-02: Adriana Murguia, “Dear Mrs. Fauver”

80A-03: Elizabeth Cardenas, “The Unappreciated Hands in this Country”

80A-04: Damarie Sanchez Avalos

80A - 05: Andrew Khiev, “Breaking the Limitations I Create”

80A-16: Ashleigh Decarr  “Does This Social Construction Make Me Look Fat?”

80A- 17: Santino Milan, “A Letter to Myself”

80A-18: Marisol Medina-Cadena, “Undoing Shame”

80A-19: Amanda Shum, “Equality in Marriage”

80A-20: Guillermo Uriarte, “Critical Analysis of the Pedagogy of the Oppressed”

80A-21: Dreyiel Robinson, "Social Construction in Popular Culture"

80B-01: Lyndsey Olsen, “Letter to Myself”

80B-02: Molly Meadows, “Profitable Oppression”

80C-01: Marshon Darden-Smith “The Truth Can Only Set You Free If You Are Strong”

80C-02: Iris Taichakova, “Negotiating Double Identity”

80C-03: Devon Watts, “Clearing Up This Racist Mess”

80C-04: Raquel Torres, “New Race-less Law—the Recipe for Disappearance”

80C-05: Joanna Perez “[The Madonnas of Echo Park]"

80C-06: Laura Flores, “What is Social Construction?