Grand Bahamian Student Places Top Three in FCCA Essay Competition

 Lewis Yard Primary School Student Wanessa Hanna is the first Grand Bahamian in 10 years to place in The Florida Caribbean Cruise Association’s (FCCA) essay writing competition.

The fifth grade student placed third in the competition’s Junior Division and will receive a cash prize of $1000.00. Her school, Lewis Yard Primary, will receive a cash prize of the same value. Hanna will be awarded an additional $200 for being selected as a finalist.


The competition required students to write a five hundred word essay on the topic "What will cruise ship passengers learn about my country? What will they remember most and hold with them?".

10-year-old Hanna chose to write about the Grand Bahamian hospitality, the creativity of the local vendors, the natural landscapes, and the food culture in the Bahamas and impressed the judges with her descriptive piece.

"I felt excited, proud, and I felt surprised because I never actually won something like that," Hanna said after she was recognized for her accomplishments at a special back to school assembly this week.

“We were very excited that Wanessa was a winner of the FCCA national competition and was selected to represent The Bahamas. Then she placed third in the regional competition, so we are truly excited at Lewis Yard Primary," said Juanita Hanna Principal at Lewis Yard Primary School.principal

Coordinated by the Ministry of Tourism & Aviation’s Training and Education Department, a total of twenty-two essays from The Bahamas were submitted in the national competition, with four coming from Grand Bahama Island. All essays were judged by a panel in New Providence who chose just two finalists to represent the Junior and Senior Divisions.

"We at the Ministry of Tourism & Aviation, we're so happy to celebrate with her because it’s a big deal. Some may say third place is not the overall winner, but for Grand Bahama Island, she's a winner, she made it and she's going to be rewarded tremendously," said Karenda Swain, Asst. Manager, Training & Education Department, MOTA.