ET competes in Black History Oratory Competition

Eastern Tech student earns 2nd place in WJZ-TV’s Black History Oratory Competition 2023
Posted on 03/01/2023
Favour Ogedengbe

Favour Ogedengbe, a Grade 11 student at Eastern Technical High School, earned second place in WJZ-TV’s Black History Oratory Competition 2023.

Her honor was announced during WJZ-TV’s Black History Oratory Competition Special, which aired on February 25. As the second-place winner, Ogedengbe received $400 from WJZ-TV and $1,500 from Walmart.

The annual Black History Month competition is open to students in Grades 9–12. This year, 200 students from across Maryland submitted 500-word essays in response to quotations from agricultural scientist and inventor George Washington Carver, entrepreneur and activist Madam C.J. Walker, or author and attorney Charles W. Chestnutt.

The following is an excerpt from Ogedengbe’s essay: “Madam C.J. Walker's authoritative tone pushes me to push past fear, she says ‘Don't sit down and wait for opportunities to come… Get up and make them!’ The truth is preparation will always pave the way for opportunity. Yes, you may not have all you want, and the cycle keeps duplicating day after day, but there's always something to do in every season. If you're waiting, locate an inspiration, be inspired. DEFEAT FEAR NOW! Defeat fear because if the opportunities come and fear still presides, opportunities will seem inferior. Defeat fear so it doesn't defeat opportunities.

Ogedengbe was one of 11 BCPS students selected as one of the 20 contest finalists. The essays can be found online as well as videos of the finalists presenting their essays. The other BCPS finalists are Tulika Ahuja, Grade 10, George Washington Carver Center for Arts and Technology; Nia Bryant, Grade 11, George Washington Carver Center for Arts and Technology; Lily Espinoza, Grade 12, Hereford High School; Flematu Fofana, Grade 11, Towson High School; Ashanti Gillis, Grade 9, Towson High School; MacKenzie Lea, Grade 10, Catonsville High School; Jaxson Metzbower, Grade 12, Hereford High School; Mahlet Nigussu, Grade 11, Perry Hall High School; Elon Raya, Grade 11, Catonsville High School; and Zariah Smithwick, Grade 10, Kenwood High School.