June 8 is set aside as World Ocean’s Day and it is a time to reflect and highlight the importance the oceans have to our existence. Oceana’s Ocean Day competition promises prizes that will allow the winners to visit Belize’s most famous marine tourist destination. Oceana is seeking Belizean participants in its 2010 World Ocean’s Day Essay Competition under the topic “Offshore Oil Exploration and Drilling – is it good for our People and Oceans?”
VP for Ocean Audrey Matura-shepherd explained that, “the topic was chosen because it is relevant to the national debate on Government’s decision to parcel out our entire marine resources and through the competition not only are participants given a forum to be part of the debate, but it also will serve as a meter of what members or our society are thinking about the situation.”
This first of its kind competition is opened to three categories and a winner will be chosen from each category. The categories are:
CATERGORY I – Individual/General (not for those attending school and/or falling in the two other categories, participant must be at 16 years and older);
CATEGORY II – High School – (essay can be written and submitted by an individual student or a group of students – but must be submitted through the school);
CATEGORY III – Tertiary Institution – (could be written and submitted by an individual student or a group of students – but must be submitted through the school).
The essay may be no longer than 2,000 words (does not include footnotes and references) and must be in English. Students will be judged on the quality of the relevance of the content to the topic, knowledge and understanding of the topic, the level of research included, how informative it is, the coherence of thought, and the structure of the essay. Quotes and references must be marked throughout the essay and properly cited. Essays can be purely scientific in content or can adopt a policy related perspective such as economics and development. No previously published material will be accepted.
Deadline for Submissions is Friday June 4th, 2010 and winners will be announced on June 8, 2010 at Oceana’s Ocean Day forum. Winners will be alerted a day before.
Prizes for categories are:
CATERGORY I – An all expense paid trip for the winner and 9 friends to the Blue Hole (group limit applies) – sponsored by Hugh Parkey and Oceana;
CATEGORY II – An all day expense paid trip for winner and 24 others (classmates/teachers) or the group plus others to a total of 25 to snorkel at Hol Chan Marine Reserve – donated by Oceana, SEAduced Tours & Elito Arceo;
CATEGORY III – Dive or snorkel for the winner and three friends at Whale Shark Zone – sponsored by AVADON Divers; SEA (Southern Environmental Association) and Oceana and one night stay at Laru Beya Resort in Placencia donated by Ian McField for the winner and guests.
All Prizes are valid for one year and details of usage must be worked out with the sponsors.
“I am so pleased and the positive response received from all our sponsors who did not hesitate in anyway to be a part of this educational project which will allow not only the winners but friends and classmates to visit these magnificent marine sites which is such a great part of our Belizean heritage”, said Matura-Shepherd. She added that these sponsors must be recognized for their valuable contribution.
Submissions must be sent electronically and by hard copy and must be in Word format. Electronic submissions are to be mailed to firstname.lastname@example.org and mailed to PO Box 1500 or dropped off at Oceana’s office at #33 Cor. Dean & Regent Streets, Belize City.
Oceana reserves the right to publish and/or make available to the public the winning submissions. The essay will be judge by a panel of three with expertise in various areas including science and economics. Oceana reserves the right to determine the winner and its decisions cannot be challenged.
To find out more about the competition visit: belize.oceana.org for competition guidelines or follow us on Facebook. Participants can also collect a copy of the guidelines from Oceana’s office at #33 cor. Dean & Regent Street.