Cuyahoga Community College wants Northeast Ohio teens to weigh in on the question: “What is racism, and what should we do about it?”

An essay contest based upon that question is open to high school students in Cuyahoga, Geauga, Lake, Lorain, Medina, Portage and Summit counties. The contest is part of Tri-C’s Stand for Racial Justice, which seeks to advance racial equity and healing in the community.

The College’s Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Humanities Center is sponsoring the contest in partnership with cleveland.com, The Plain Dealer and Sun News.

Essays can’t exceed 500 words and are due by midnight Dec. 18. Entries should be submitted at tri-c.edu/essaycontest.

One category is for seniors and juniors and the other is for sophomores and freshmen. Winners will be announced in January as part of Martin Luther King Jr. Day observances. Cash prizes will be awarded as follows in each category: $1,000 for first place, $500 for second place, and $250 for third place.

In addition, authors of the top five senior/junior submissions will be guaranteed entry into Tri-C’s Mandel Scholars Academy if they enroll at the college. Admission into the academy includes a scholarship valued at more than $10,000.

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