To gain an appreciation for Baptist history and heritage and share well-informed perspective with others.
Each year the contest is for high school students and carries cash awards and the publication of the winning essays. It is a special opportunity for individuals or for an entire Sunday school class or Youth Group to encourage its members to enter.
The theme changes each year. For example, the 2014 Essay Contest the student writers were asked to reflect upon the following statement: "The impact for good which Baptists have made across their 300 year presence in Virginia." The student essay first place winner was Andrew Cook, a high school student in Blacksburg, Virginia. His winning essay was published in the Virginia Baptist Register, No. 53 (2014).
There were no awards in 2015. In 2016 the topic was on the value of learning about other people and cultures around the world and the first place essay was by Megan Summer Hayes of Amelia, Va.
The 2017 essay theme centered upon Religious Liberty especially in our contemporary society. For 2018, the program is on pause for a periodic assessment.
The Center exists in part to help young Baptists learn about the past; likewise, we hope to allow others to hear and learn from their ideas for the future. If you are an aspiring writer, we would be delighted to receive your submission. If you are an adult leader of youth in your church, promote the Roots and Wings Young Scholars Essay Contest and encourage thoughtful students to submit an essay.