Slovak Contest Winners - Sept 2005

As a parallel activity with the “Back to the Homeland 2005” conference which was held September 2005 in Bratislava and Prague, CGSI sponsored an essay competition.

The contest was for high school age students in the Slovak and Czech republics. The purpose is to encourage interest among young people in their own family histories. In addition, CGSI readers of their stories would develop increased insight into life in their homelands, and how it is regarded by the current generation of young people.

The 2004-2005 school year competition in the Slovak Republic was in collaboration with the Open Society Foundation and benefited from financial underwriting by the US Embassy in Bratislava. Cash prizes were awarded to the winners at a luncheon Tuesday, September 20, 2005 on the first day of the conference. The three winners are Barbora Slabakova, Sona Smilekova, and Viktoria Tothova, with Marek Krivy, Katarina Michalkova, and Gabor Lapos also receiving recognition as finalists. A screening committee in the Slovak Republic composed of representatives of Comenius University and the national archives read all the essays and selected the six best. Those were translated into English and a committee of CGSI representatives selected the three prizewinners.

36 Essays were submitted as part of the Essay competation. Special note is taken of the surnames and place names mentioned. Summaries of the 36 essays are for sale.

Essay by Barbora Slabakova

Essay by Sona Smilekova

Essay by Viktoria Tothova


Sona Smilekova, Barbora Slabakova, Dottie Speidel, and Viktoria Tothova