Amherst student among those honored in Letters About Literature program

TYNGSBOROUGH, Mass. – Saniya Singh, of Nashua, and Lauren Bradley, of Tyngsborough, Mass., both recent eighth-grade graduates of the Academy of Notre Dame in Tyngsborough, Mass., were honored at an awards ceremony at the Massachusetts Statehouse recently for their participation in the Letters About Literature Program.

This annual nation-wide writing contest for students who are in grades 4-12, is sponsored by the Massachusetts Center for the Book and affiliated nationally with the Center for the Book
in the Library of Congress.

Students participate by reading a book, poem or speech, then writing a letter to the author about how that book affected them.

Nationally, more than 69,000 letters were entered into the competition this year, with only 10 percent advancing to the third round for state-level judging.

“All seventh- and eighth-grade students here at the academy participated,” elementary library media specialist Kathleen Smith said.

“Nine of our students placed in the top 10 percent statewide, including Lauren and Saniya, who placed in the top 1 percent of entrants nationwide,” she said.

Honorable mention status was earned by Anmol Goraya, of Nashua.

Semifinalists included Alexandra Bazzani, of Nashua, Mackenzie Patten, of Amherst, Evan Fagan, of Dracut, Mass., Grace Manley, of Pepperell, Mass., Kevin Richer, of Chelmsford, Mass., and Maya Wilson, of Tyngsborough, Mass. These seven students ranked in the top 10 percent out of more than 3,000 entries statewide.

“We are incredibly proud of and overwhelmed by how well our academy students performed in this contest,” Smith said. “This is a remarkable achievement.”