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Student Writing Essay

Twelve Students Win Cash Prizes in Wisconsin Business World Essay Contest

MADISON – Wisconsin Business World, an affiliate of WMC Foundation, announced the winners of its biannual Essay Contest on Monday. Nine students were named as honorable mentions, and three were named winners in the contest, sponsored by ITU AbsorbTech.

Wisconsin Business World programs its contests around the theme, “Business is a Force for Good.” For the essay contest, students were prompted to answer the question, “Why Wisconsin?”, exploring why they love living in Wisconsin and discussing at least one business that shapes their community and that embodies the message that Business is a Force for Good.

“Wisconsin businesses produce innovative and needed products, but we also want young people to see the impact they make in their communities,” said Senior Director of Wisconsin Business World Michelle Grajkowski. “From great career opportunities to community philanthropy, businesses have immense influence on our state’s economy and families.”

The winners of Wisconsin Business World’s “Why Wisconsin” Essay Contest: 

Breyden Johll – 10th grade – Cuba City High School

Olivia Kutzner – 12th grade – Arrowhead High School

Dhruv Prakash – 12th grade – Middleton High School


This year’s honorable mention entries: 

Garin Melton – 12th grade – Cameron High School

Lucas Gibs-Pearl – 11th grade – Arrowhead High School

Jordan Gile – 11th grade – Cuba City High School

AJ Gordon – 9th grade – Cuba City High School

Sloan Zsohar – 12th grade – Arrowhead High School

Ann-Kathrin Ernst – 12th grade – Arrowhead High School

Abby Hendricks – 11th grade – Arrowhead High School

Muna Hirschberg – 11th grade – Wrightstown High School

Khadija El-Refaie – 11th grade – Arrowhead High School


Winning students featured Gooch’s Greenhouse in Kieler, small businesses in Minocqua, New Glarus Brewing Company in New Glarus, Swagat in Madison, Kwik Trip in La Crosse, Culver’s in Prairie du Sac, Wild Tomato in Door County, and many other impactful businesses, large and small, across the state.

“We are proud to sponsor this contest because it makes students dig into many of the great companies in our state and look at businesses that are exceptional employers, are innovative and support their communities in lots of ways,” said ITU AbsorbTech President & CEO Jim Leef. “There are fantastic career opportunities for young people throughout Wisconsin. Thank you to all the educators and entrants, and congratulations to all the winners!”

Each of the winning essay writers was awarded $500; the honorable mention essay writers were awarded $100. Wisconsin Business World will host a similar essay contest this fall.

Wisconsin Business World – a program of WMC Foundation – educates students on business, entrepreneurism and the free market through its statewide competitions, Summer Camps, one-day programs, online curriculum and classroom presentations. The Business World message is simple — Business is a Force for Good. For more information about Wisconsin Business World and its programs, visit





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