Scholarship Essay by Emma From Columbine High School

April 16, 2019

This essay, by Emma from Columbine High School, is one of the top five finalists for our scholarship. Be sure to share your thoughts in the comment section below this post!

This winter, I got my car stuck in the snow because I drove it backwards and got scared that I was going to hit the power box, so I swerved into a snowbank. After fifteen minutes of trying desperately to get out, I dug around in my garage for orange cones and put them up around my car, a defeated person.

Slowly, my neighbors came emerging from their houses. Almost all of my neighbors came over and asked me if I needed help getting my car unstuck, or if I wanted a ride to my school on the other side of town. They all took time out of their busy mornings to offer to help me out, and every single person was entirely sincere.

I love Littleton because of its sense of community. I have so many anecdotes about neighbors, even outside my cul de sac, all banding together to help each other out. People even streets away knew my cat and would call us every time he went missing, giving us information or asking if we’d found him yet. Anonymous donors gave my elementary school the money to send everyone to Outdoor Lab when I was in sixth grade. I’ve seen someone come in late to school because he stopped at a car accident to make sure that everyone was okay. Neighbors isn’t an issue of proximity in Littleton–we’re all neighbors. We all care for each other.

I can’t go anywhere in this town without seeing someone I know. My friend’s dad is also my teacher, so I’ll see him at his house. I’ll see people from my old elementary school at Virgilio’s. I’ll see my old dance teacher at King Soopers. Not to mention the relationships I’ve built simply being a customer throughout Littleton: Mark from Tamale Kitchen has watched me grow up and I talked to Lina from Dillards more than my grandma.

Littleton’s sense of community is especially clear at community events. The Summerset Festival was something I loved attending when I was a kid. It gave me a reason to look forward to September, a month otherwise associated with going back to school. That festival brought together the whole community for us to all have fun together. It was a place to see local artists and make new friends in a place where my parents felt safe enough to let me roam. Now, I get to watch that fun happen while I volunteer at a soda booth for Key Club. No matter what age someone is, all Littleton residents have a place at the Summerset Festival.

Schools are also a strong demonstration of Littleton’s sense of community. The Chaktoabine dance is held every winter and it is a chance for Chatfield, Dakota Ridge, and Columbine to all get together as part of the Littleton community and enjoy a night all together. It’s a way to celebrate the good-spirited rivalry between us and how we’re all connected. There’s also a program between theater departments at schools like Columbine, Bear Creek, and Lakewood set up so that we can all go to each other’s shows and cheer each other on. We cheer for each other louder than anyone else in the audience, and we make sure to congratulate people by name when we see them afterwards. Littleton is a community that believes in whole-hearted, wildly jubilant support.

While we’re a community that celebrates together, we’re also a community that bands together during hard times. When I casually mentioned my parent’s divorce to a girl I’d just met at a babysitting night, she hugged me and apologized and said that she was available for me to talk to anytime. In the aftermath of the tragedy at Columbine, Chatfield stopped being a true rival and welcomed the students and teachers with open arms and love. That’s the sort of kindness unique to Littleton, genuine and healing. Even today, as my school prepares for the Day of Service, it comes from the belief that neighbors help each other through dark times.

I love Littleton for our community. This town is where family begins, it’s the roots you come back to, it’s home. It’s love. It’s taught me that the most important part of any place I live will be the people I meet because they will make me better. They will make me complete.

Posted In: Office News

100 thoughts on “Scholarship Essay by Emma From Columbine High School

  1. Robert Jones

    This young lady is the type of young person that can really make a difference in bringing the American people back together as it should be. Her description of Littleton is exactly how we should be as a country. Really a terrific read!!

    Reply
  2. Catherine McNamara

    Beautifully written essay! It was wonderful to learn that Emma feels a sense of community just as I did growing up in a small town. A talented young lady!

    Reply
  3. Heather Anderson

    You shared such lovely snapshots of the Littleton community. It adds so much to the overall feeling of comfort to see neighborhood schools coming together to support each other.

    Reply
  4. Kelly Davider

    Well written! This is the very essence of hope, that we can band together as a community and move forward after such a horrific event.

    Reply
  5. Jami

    Wow. I grew up in Littleton, and it is everything you say. A gift for writing, indeed. Best of luck to you on your journey.

    Reply
  6. Larissa Welsh

    Emma’s essay is excellent! Emma is an intricate part of her community, and this essay shows everyone why: she is grateful, and that makes all the difference!

    Reply
  7. Holly

    Great job capturing the true spirit of Littleton- something I miss as I have moved away from there. Reading this made me feel right back there!

    Reply
  8. Hope Rader

    Emma,
    Your sense of community is similar to your beautiful mother’s, which I am very well aware since we grew up together in the small town of Manitou. You’re very articulate. Wishing you the very best Dear One!
    Hope

    Reply
  9. Kristian Dahlquist

    This piece is beautifully written. Emma has an eloquent style and easily grabs the readers attention!

    Reply
  10. Jessica M

    Growing up in Littleton and graduating from Columbine also, I sincerely echo these sentiments. Way to go!

    Reply
  11. Holly Schopfer

    Excellent job artfully describing the beauty and kindness of our city! So proud to live here, too!!!

    Reply
  12. J. Wilson

    Well written and interesting, a sense of community and belonging, two very precious gifts. I believe Emma would put the scholarship efficient and good use.

    Reply
  13. Cindy Parmley

    Beautiful writing, I can feel the love and pride she holds for her Community. Paints a perfect portrait of a place I would love to live. Great work Emma!

    Reply
  14. Sharon

    This essay is well written and has my vote. It exudes so many reasons why Littleton is a community with caring and friendly people. Loved the essay and love the community!

    Reply
  15. Margie Smith

    How wonderful that Emma feels so safe and happy in her hometown. I am so happy that she feels so well taken care of by everyone in this community. I love Littleton even more now.

    Reply
  16. Hannah T

    This essay has such insight and brings the reader in such an inviting and endearing way into her community. Talented and a bright future I’m sure.

    Reply
  17. Katherine Mosier

    Very well written on how community matters. It makes you happy to read how this has enhanced her life and reminds us all of how we grew up in a small community and knew everyone. Great job Emma.

    Reply
  18. Catherine riddick

    Being an outsider, Emma gave me a great sense of her community, something all good writing should do. I loved being introduced to Littleton through this well written and informative essay.

    Reply
  19. Laura McDonald

    Emma’s a great writer and a wonderful student and overall fabulous girl! Can’t wait to see what the future holds for such a deserving person.

    Reply
  20. Bill Buchanan

    Great job Emma! The way you feel about Littleton reminds me of how I and so many others felt about growing up in Manitou Springs and enjoying life in a town that survived the winters and flourished in the summer. We knew everyone, and even though we didn’t always get along, we were Mustangs to the core and gave our all in everything we did. I’m happy for you and sincerely hope your essay wins!!

    Reply
  21. Glenda Brauer

    What a lovely description of a community seen and felt through the written words of this young lady. Good read

    Reply
  22. Charise Clarridge

    This essay lays out what truly makes a great community. And in times like these, a perspective like this can go along way towards forming solidarity. If our communities gave importance to the way we can rely on each other in hard times as was the case during the Columbine tragedy, and also moments of happiness and prosperity, when the students were able to attend a function because of a community-member’s donation, then we can truly see a bright future ahead of us. And I felt that to be possible, reading Emma’s essay.

    Reply
  23. Heather Anderson

    Emma has really captured the value of community in her essay. What a lovely snapshot of other schools uniting to support each other also!

    Reply
  24. Lauren Schick

    Emma is so amazing, and works hard at everything she does. I can’t wait to see what happens with her after high school, but I know it’s gonna be great.

    Reply
  25. Cynthia

    The more Ivread it the more I have to say that the world needs more love and more “community” thanks Emma.

    Reply
  26. William L Schick

    Emma – thank you for the positive message! I have lived here for more than 20 years and could not agree more!

    Reply
  27. Janice

    Emma’s essay was awesome . She wrote about how she really feels about Littleton and the people in that town . I’m sure she’ll be successful in whatever she does .

    Reply
  28. Jack Mauro

    Really great essay! Does an excellent job painting such an accurate portrait of Littleton’s community.

    Reply

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