SINT MAARTEN (PHILIPSBURG) - Maria Granger, a 14-year-old student of the Learning Unlimited Preparatory school placed first in the Senior Division of the annual FCCA Essay contest organized and coordinated by the St. Maarten Tourism Bureau.
D'Angelique Harregan of the Methodist Agogic Center was also a finalist in this year's competition.
Minister of Tourism, Economic Affairs, Transport & Telecommunication (TEATT), the honorable Stuart Johnson commended the performance of Granger on Monday saying he was very proud of "St. Maarten's shining stars." Johnson said the St. Maarten students who participate in this event each year, continue to show their talent and more importantly, their love for St. Maarten.
"This is indeed a proud moment for St. Maarten again, to have a first-place winner in this important competition, says May-Ling Chun, Director of the St. Maarten Tourism Bureau. She said the competition is "significant as it helps our students to get a better understanding of our tourism-based economy. "By understanding it, they become more positive contributors to the further development of the industry," said Chun.
The competition is designed to create greater awareness amongst schools and the growing population on the importance of the tourism industry and more specifically, the Cruise Industry.
This year's essay competition attracted entries from 19 nations, with the theme being: "Many Cruise passengers use cruising as a way to sample different destinations. What impression does my country?
leave on these passengers, and how does it or should it attract them back as stay-over guests?"
As the winner in her age group, Maria Granger will be awarded a cash scholarship of $3000,- with the Learning Unlimited Preparatory school receiving a monetary award of $3000,-
For being an on Island Finalist D"Angelique Harregan will receive a cash amount of $200,-
The Minister of TEATT and the St. Maarten Tourism Bureau has extended its sincere thanks to the teachers at the Learning Unlimited, and the Methodist Agogic Centre on their guidance of the students and helping them to achieve greatness.