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Iranian Alliances Across Borders Announces the Winners of the 2008 Essay Contest

Congratulations to the winners of the 2008 Essay Contest! This year, the contest received submissions from high school students worldwide. We would like to extend our deepest gratitude to all of the young writers who participated. The top ten essays were carefully read over by a panel of guest judges. After much consideration, the following talented young writers were selected as the winners:

First Place: Rosa Rad
Second Place
: Mana Aliabadi
Tied for Third Place: Taara Khalilnaji and Mohammad Sagha

Rosa will receive a full scholarship to IAAB's Camp Ayandeh ($625 value), which will be held in Atlanta, Georgia from June 22-28, 2008. Mana will receive $250, and Mohammad and Taara will each receive $100.
We would also like to recognize the rest of the top ten finalists: Lance Seasholtz, Arjang Navab, Nicole Soleimani, Marrisa Noori and Reza Rezvani, for their inspiring and beautifully written essays.
The top four winners will also receive a copy of Persis Karim's "A World Between: Poems, Short Stories, and Essays by Iranian Americans." The top ten winners will receive copies of Maz Jobrani's "Axis of Evil Comedy Tour" DVD, Persis Karim's "Let Me Tell You Where I've Been: New Writing By Women of the Iranian Diaspora," Shabnam Rezaei's "Babak and Friends: A First Norooz" DVD, as well as personalized comments from the guest judges on their work. Their essays will also appear in an e-book to be published by IAAB in June. The e-book publication will be available on the 2008 Essay Contest website and will include the complete work of all ten finalists.
IAAB would like to thank the guest judges - Maz Jobrani, Tara Bahrampour, Persis Karim, Kamin Mohammadi and Shabnam Rezaei - for volunteering their time and expertise to this year's Essay Contest. This project would not have been possible without them.
On behalf of the staff at Iranian Alliances Across Borders, congratulations to all of the winners on their outstanding achievement.

"All in all, I was very impressed by these essays. Most of all by the sense of responsibility these kids show towards their culture and representing Iran in the US, breaking down barriers and prejudice by providing a positive example of Iranian courtesy, culture and intelligence. I think the future of the diaspora is assured if it is in such hands as these..."   -guest judge Kamin Mohammadi

Iranian Alliances Across Borders (IAAB)

IAAB is a 501(c)(3) non-partisan, non-profit volunteer organization with a young, dedicated staff spread across the United States, Europe and Iran. The mission of the organization is to address issues of the Iranian diaspora community while raising awareness of the Iranian community, promoting leadership, and connecting Iranians across borders. For more information about IAAB please visit

... Payvand News - 06/04/08 ... --

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