Julie Agard
assistant professor, Department of Teacher Education, 308.865.8556

Ten competitors demonstrated that they had “the write stuff” in the 22nd annual Nebraska Handwriting Contest.

Competitors were divided into four categories: ages 12 and under; ages 13-16; ages 17-49; and ages 50 and over. Prizes were awarded for first and second place, and were sponsored by The Antelope Bookstore on the University of Nebraska at Kearney campus.

“The entries were evaluated for ease of reading, fluent rhythmic movement with technically correct performance of specifications such as the slope, space, size and shape of the letters,” said Julie Agard, contest coordinator and an assistant professor in the UNK Department of Teacher Education. “The general layout of the entry was taken into consideration along with neatness of presentation.

“The broad appeal of the contest continues with entries from all regions of the state and in all age categories,” she added, noting that, “Elementary teachers were, once again, especially supportive of the curriculum-based activity and provided the largest number of entries for an age group.”

“The young adult age category gave us a repeat winner,” Agard said. Rita Vogel of York placed first in the ages 17-49 category for the third consecutive year.

“Competition was exceptionally fierce at the upper end of the contest,” Agard said. “The age 50 and over category always produces excellent examples of legible handwriting, and this year was true to form.” Denise Smith of Lexington placed among the top three in the age 50 and over category for the third consecutive year.

“The judges especially appreciated the opportunity to examine entries from participants who had reached their 90s and were still displaying a beautiful form of cursive writing,” Agard said. Judging took place in Kearney.

Winners, by category, include: ages 12 and under – Lauren Jacobsen of Pilger, first place; Alice Derun of Raymond, second place; and Keegan Ruskamp of Pender, honorable mention. Ages 13-16 – Devin Bedke of Kearney, first place, and Jessica Green of Kearney, second place. Ages 17-49 – Rita Vogel of York, first place, and Kelly Swallow of Madison, second place. Age 50 and over – Betty Petersen of Lincoln, first place; Agnes Andreasen of Grand Island, second place; and Denise Smith of Lexington, honorable mention.

The competition is administered by the University of Nebraska at Kearney, and endorsed by the Nebraska State Education Association and the Nebraska State Department of Education.