Essay contest winner following in brother’s footsteps


Tuskegee, Ala. (April 14, 2014) – For Eric and Niesha Marks, sibling rivalry is paying off. The brother and sister from Flint, Mich., were two of five President’s Essay Contest participants and both came out winners on Sunday. In their first time competing in the same event, Niesha captured 1st Place and Eric won 3rd Place. In 2012, Eric won 1st Place in the contest.

Sister and brother, Niesha and Eric
“I am proud of her. I’m glad that I set out a good path and she can do better than me,” Eric said. 

This year’s essay theme was “How Does the Use of Technology Contribute to the Undergraduate Experience?” During her essay presentation in University Chapel, Niesha focused on the fact that technology is heavily embedded in our modern culture and even shapes the work ethic. 

“We live in a generation where the motto is, ‘I want it done yesterday.’”

Niesha is a sophomore animal science major and Eric is a senior aerospace engineering major. Atiba T. Phillip, a sophomore majoring in finance from Brooklyn, N.Y.; won 2nd Place in the competition. First Place winners are given a $1,000 scholarship, $600 for 2nd Place and $400 for 3rd Place. Other contest participants were: Aiesha L. Etheridge, a senior chemical engineering major from Youngstown, Ohio; and Jakayla Dills, a sophomore biology major from Milwaukee, Wis. 

During the program, recipients of several university scholarships, members of the 2013-2014 “Who’s Who Among Students in American Colleges and Universities,” the 2013-2014 Honda Campus All-Star Challenge Team, and new student leaders were also honored. 

“Congratulations to all the winners, awardees and speakers,” said Acting Tuskegee University President, Dr. Matthew Jenkins. “You’ve got to walk through life selling yourself. You’re selling yourself with your writing and your attitude.”

© 2014 Tuskegee University

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