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 Northwest Vista College Library
1st Floor, Redbud Learning Center (RLC)
3535 N. Ellison Dr.
San Antonio, TX 78251
Mon - Thur: 7:30am to 6:00pm

Writing Contest: Why a Degree?

Contest Results 2014: 

For the fourth year in a row, the Public Relations team conducted the "Why a Degree: Writing Contest" as part of the degree completion campaign to enhance student and employee perception about the importance of completing a degree or certificate at Northwest Vista College.

The objective of the contest is to encourage students to think about completion and commit to writing it as a goal. Another objective of the project is to engage a diverse group of NVC faculty and staff in the completion process by learning first-hand why students want to pursue an associate degree or certificate.

Many thanks to the 24 faculty and staff members who got a rare glimpse into the hearts and minds of 61 NVC students who participated in the Writing Contest and shared their stories of perseverance towards earning a degree or certificate from NVC. With the support of NVC President Jackie Claunch, and Lynne Dean, director of Institutional Advancement, and the NVC bookstore, NVC awarded $1,200 in gift card prizes to the Writing Contest participants. In addition, all students who entered the contest received an NVC thumb drive. The students who earned the most points for their stories won the top prizes. 

  • 1st place ($300 Alamo Colleges Foundation scholarship) – Brandi Kemp
  • 1st place ($300 Alamo Colleges Foundation scholarship) - Gustavo M. Villa, Jr.
  • 2nd place ($100 Alamo Colleges Foundation scholarship) – Jackie Banton
  • 3rd place ($50 NVC Bookstore gift card) - Brittney Napolez
  • 18 students randomly selected for entering the contest received each a $25 NVC bookstore gift card

Thank you to all who applied!

Click here to read the 2014 winning essays


Contest Results 2013:

Sixty-six students participated in the second annual Northwest Vista College Writing Contest, “Why a Degree.”Students wrote their essays based on one of the four themes: accomplishment, money, opportunity and better jobs (read the Writing Contest Rules).

The contest is part the college’s strategic public relations campaign to change students’ perceptions about the value of a degree from a community college. The purpose is to encourage students to think about degree completion and commit to it by writing down their goals. 

Each essay was reviewed and scored by a group of college faculty and staff. First, second and third place winners were announced on May 11, 2012 (read the article, Students Chosen for Writing Contest).

The first place winner received $250. There were four students who tied for second place and each of them received $150. The third place winner received a $50 NVC bookstore gift card. Congratulations to all the winners:

  • First Place Winner - Stacia Hernandez - $250 scholarship
  • Second Place Winner - Tracy Christian - $150 scholarship
  • Second Place Winner - Richard Havel - $150 scholarship
  • Second Place Winner - Jonathan Machuca - $150 scholarship
  • Second Place Winner - Kimberly Redgate - $150 scholarship
  • Third Place Winner - Cynthia Reyes - $50 NVC bookstore gift card

All 66 students who submitted an essay will receive an NVC°=Accomplishment t-shirt. The t-shirts have been ordered and will soon be available for pick up. Check this website periodically for more information.

Click here to read the 2013 winning essays

Students are encouraged to continue writing and consider submitting their stories for other Northwest Vista College scholarships. To find out more on scholarships available at NVC, visit


NVC Graduation Ceremony

Northwest Vista College holds its annual Commencement in May.

Degree Completion Checklist

 Degree Completion Checklist