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Janelle Hrycik, 18, of Colden, who has just graduated from Springville-Griffith Institute High School, has won third place in a national essay contest.

This honor student worked hard taking advanced placement classes and earned the rank of 15th in her class out of 177 students. A member of the National Honor Society, she served as editor-in-chief of her school paper. Janelle has also actively participated in both regional and state competitions for Science Olympiad and Envirothon.

Janelle received the Southampton Scholars Award Scholarship and will be attending Southampton College of Long Island University in September, majoring in marine vertebrate biology and political science.

In her prize-winning piece, from the CQ Researcher student essay competition, she tackles the controversial question, "Should race be a factor in college admissions?"

She traces the history of affirmative action, which, she noted, became "mandatory in American corporations associated with the government and in universities that received federal scholarship aid and research funding." She offered an alternative: improving "schools and housing."

Know a young outstanding Western New Yorker? Tell us about your nomination, including age and address, for possible publication in ClassActs. Write to: Louise Continelli, The Buffalo News, P.O. Box 100, Buffalo, N.Y. 14240, or e-mail

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