Essay Contest Opens to Milpitas Students Grades 4-12

For Immediate Release
October 26, 2015

“What Does it Mean to Be Human?”

SANTA CLARA COUNTY, CALIF. October 26, 2015 –The Milpitas Library is asking local students their thoughts on “What Does it Mean to Be Human?”  A new essay contest open to  Milpitas Students, grades 4-12, the contest is held in conjunction with the Smithsonian Institution’s traveling exhibit: “Exploring Human Origins: What Does It Mean to Be Human?” which opens on November 25, 2015 at the Milpitas Library.   The essay contest is sponsored by the Milpitas Public Library and the Milpitas Public Library Advisory Commission. Update December 14, 2015: This event has now ended.

All Milpitas students (grades 4-12) currently attending public or private schools or home schooled are invited to submit their essays.  Compositions must be original; only one entry per person.   Each essay must be typed, double-spaced, with 1-inch margins and 12 point Times New Roman font and adhere to the maximum word counts for their grade levels: 

Grades 4-6 (500 maximum word count)
Grades 7-8 (600 maximum word count)
Grades 9-12 (700 maximum word count)

Essays must include information and reactions regarding content learned while visiting the Human Origins exhibit at the Milpitas Library between November 25th and December 13, 2015.   Student essays will be judged on how well students portray ideas, word choice, sentence structuring, punctuation and overall paragraph ordering.  Papers may be submitted to the Children’s Reference Desk or the Adult Reference Desk at the Milpitas Library, 160 N. Main Street, Milpitas on or before Sunday, December 13, 2015.   An entry form must be stapled to the front of the essay. (Entry forms can be found at the Milpitas Library or downloaded from SCCLD’s website:  The top 10 essays in each of the three categories will win a $100 gift card.  Winners will be announced during an award ceremony scheduled for Sunday, December 20, 2015 @ 2 p.m. in the Milpitas Library auditorium.  For additional information, please contact Stephen Fitzgerald at, opens a new window or (408) 262-1171.

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About the Santa Clara County Library District
The Santa Clara County Library District (SCCLD) promotes knowledge, ideas, and cultural enrichment. Its collection includes more than 1.9 million books, videos, CDs, DVDs, audiobooks, eBooks and extensive online resources accessible from home or work.

In 2014, SCCLD celebrated one hundred years of service to local residents. For the last several years, SCCLD has been consistently recognized as one of America’s Star Libraries by Library Journal. In 2014, SCCLD was ranked among the top ten large libraries in the United States in the Library Journal Index of Public Library Service. In 2014, SCCLD won a Top Innovator Award from the Urban Libraries Council for its innovative program to revive episodic fiction. 

The Santa Clara County Library District includes two bookmobiles, an online library, seven community libraries and one branch library serving Campbell, Cupertino, Gilroy, Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, Milpitas, Monte Sereno, Morgan Hill, Saratoga and the unincorporated areas of Santa Clara County. In 2014, the Santa Clara County Library District had more than 225,000 library cardholders and welcomed 3.3 million visitors who borrowed 9.4 million items, making it one of the most used resources in the region. Visit Santa Clara County Library District online at

Stephen Fitzgerald/Community Librarian/Milpitas Library
(408) 262-1171

Chris Brown/Lili Smith
Santa Clara County Library District
(408) 293-2326 ext.3002/3014