INDIANAPOLIS, April 15, 2018 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A senior from McCracken County High School in Paducah, Ky., capped a busy weekend of competition in Indianapolis by earning an $18,000 college scholarship and first place in The American Legion High School Oratorical Scholarship Program – "A Constitutional Speech Contest." Carlissa N. Frederich's winning prepared oration was titled "Limited Government, Our Right and Responsibility."
Frederich, who lives in Paducah, started the weekend as one of 53 state or department champions in the 81st annual contest. She advanced to the championship through three rounds of intense competition. She was sponsored by American Legion Post 73 in Murray, Ky.
Emily M. Parker, a home-schooled senior from Lino Lakes, Minn., earned a $16,000 college scholarship with a second place finish, while Nathan L. York, a home-schooled junior from National City, Calif., earned a $14,000 scholarship and finished third. The scholarships account for a small portion of post-secondary scholarships that The American Legion, the nation's largest veterans organization, awards annually.
In her prepared oration, Frederich compared the Constitution to the powerful Grand Coulee Dam. "Much like the dam was built to create and harness power, our forefathers built the Constitution to create and harness power – to empower the government to act at a national level, but harness that power so it did not infringe upon individual liberty."
"The founders believed our rights came from God to the people who could then loan a very limited amount of that power to the government through the Constitution," she added. "The Constitution ensures rights. Exercising these limits government. Limited government maintains rights, completing the cycle and creating a type of ordered liberty."
In each round of the weekend competition, orators delivered a rehearsed 8- to 10-minute address and a randomly assigned 3- to 5-minute oration on a constitutional topic, each without the benefit of notes and in front of a live audience, including the judges. The 2-million member American Legion developed the contest to encourage young people to improve their communications skills and to study the U.S. Constitution. More than $3 million in scholarships have been awarded over the history of the contest.
Media Contacts: John Raughter (317) 441-8847 or Shayne Abrahams, (317)408-3381.
SOURCE The American Legion