The Study Abroad photo contest has announced its panel’s winners, and voting for student and faculty/staff choice is open through Friday.
The panel’s first place is Madelyn Carlson’s “Colores de Vida,” second place is Saeed Halim’s “Siete Colores” and third place is Amy Isvik’s “Church of the Spilled Blood.”
This year, the contest had almost 60 entries in the contest, according to Office Coordinator for Study Abroad Programs Kathy Traetow said.
Each year the judging is a little different, Traetow said. They give the judges the rules, and tell them to make sure all of them are met.
“Because it’s labeled photo contest, we like them to use a little more weight towards the photo, and a little less weight toward the essay,” Traetow said. “Something like 60/40.”
Each entry had to have a descriptive title and be a certain size. They also had to have an individual essay to go with their photo. This essay had to describe their cross-cultural experience, and be between 100-200 words.
While the photo contest has been an annual event for the Study Abroad program for over 20 years, it has continued because of what it brings to the students, Traetow said.
“It’s a visual,” Traetow said. “It introduces other cultures to the Wartburg community, as well as the outside communities. We always make sure it’s posted for a visit day that happens in November and for Christmas with Wartburg.”
It is left up for about a month, so that people can look at the photos and read the essays.
“Some of the pictures are a beauty, they’re beautiful,” Traetow said. “Some of them are precious, and some of them, just by looking at them, can evoke emotions of sadness or joy or wonder. They’re amazing.”
Traetow said that because these photos bring out emotions, it makes people want to read the essays that go along with them.
Ballots are located in the Student Life Offices. Winners of the Student and Faculty/Staff Choice award both receive $50.
“I think that the photos might encourage students to consider a May term or semester abroad because they’re somewhat enticing,” Traetow said. “I think it’s cool that students maybe by looking at them and realizing what they might understand upon coming back, they might be excited to do a May term or semester.”