HARTFORD—In honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) announced on Tuesday the 15 winners of his seventh annual ‘Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Essay Contest.’ This year, Murphy received close to 2,000 entries from elementary, middle, and high school students from across Connecticut reflecting on Dr. King’s dream and their own aspirations.

“The best way to honor Dr. King is to continue his fight for equality and justice. Every year, I’m blown away and inspired by the thoughtful reflections on Dr. King’s legacy from students all across Connecticut. Their hope and determination should remind us all that young people are changing the world,” said Murphy.

The winning essays can be viewed below. Click on each student’s name to download his or her essay.

1st Congressional District Winners:

Emma Hadari, John F. Kennedy School

Alanna Jackson, Chippens Hill Middle School

Meranyelis Negron Figueroa, A.I. Prince Technical High School

2nd Congressional District Winners:

Eli Mickus, Deans Mill School

Vanessa Spruill, Kelly Middle School

Rebecca Harper, Windham Technical High School

3rd Congressional District Winners:

Eugene Lawrence-Marsh, Hop Brook Elementary

Gabriela Alvarez, Ansonia Middle School

Venice Montanaro, Joseph A. Foran High School

4th Congressional District Winners:

Sabrina Guerra, Virtual ACCESS Academy

Juliet Chattaway, New Canaan Country School

Princesse Ashley Hyppolite, J.M. Wright Technical High School

5th Congressional District Winners:

Eloise Clemente, Washington Primary School

Cooper Brown, Thompson Brook School

Kuang-Tsu Lee, Bethel High School