Senator Craig Wilcox Launches Inaugural“My Inspirational Teacher” Essay Contest

To celebrate area teachers during Illinois’ Teacher Appreciation Week May 6-10, State Senator Craig Wilcox (R-McHenry) is launching his first annual My Inspirational Teacher Essay Contest for Middle School/Junior High School students in the 32nd Senate District.

The contest offers students an opportunity to showcase their favorite teacher’s talents and explain how that teacher has made a special difference in their lives. Specifically, students are invited to write a 250-500-word essay about the one teacher who has been the most inspirational to them in their educational journey thus far.

“Teachers make a profound difference in so many lives, and I want to provide students with an opportunity to remind them of all the ways their favorite teacher inspires and motivates them,” said Wilcox. “I will always remember Mr. Hunt, my 4th grade teacher, who found a proclivity for math in myself and other students, and challenged us daily, well beyond the math curriculum for 4th grade. That ‘challenge’ set by Mr. Hunt drove a desire to excel which he fostered all year long.  I am confident that Mr. Hunts’ desire to teach, innovate, and challenge his students brought out the best in all of us.”

When writing the essays, students should relay how a teacher’s specific actions made a positive impact, and also outline the results of exactly how the teacher changed them as they continued through school. Each entry must include the child’s name, school, and grade level, and the teacher’s name, school, and the subject taught. A panel of education leaders will read and evaluate the essays, and will consider persuasiveness, correct spelling and grammar, and adherence to contest instructions.

“Teachers serve as a role model that might not otherwise be available in some young people’s daily lives,” added Wilcox. They aren’t just educators; they also often have to wear the hat of a mentor, a counselor, or a friend. I can’t wait to read the entries for this inaugural essay contest.”

There will be several winning essays, and the grand prize winning essay will be posted on Senator Wilcox’s website ( Excerpts from all of the winning essays will be displayed for a week in the State Capitol rotunda in Springfield.

Eligible Participants: Middle School/Junior High School Students
Theme: How My Teacher Inspires Me
Entry Deadline: April 30, 2024
Announcement of Winners: Winners will be notified by email

The 32nd Senate District includes all or portions of the following communities: Antioch, Bull Valley, Cary, Crystal Lake, Fox Lake, Island Lake, Johnsburg, Lake Villa, Lakemoor, Lakewood, Lindenhurst, McCullom Lake, McHenry, Oakwood Hills, Port Barrington, Prairie Grove, Richmond, Ringwood, Round Lake Beach, Spring Grove, Trout Valley, Volo, Woodstock, and Wonder Lake.

For additional information about this essay contest, please contact Abby at, or at 248-930-8294.

Craig Wilcox

Want to stay up to date with Senator Wilcox?

Sign up for his E-Newsletter below: