As a follow up to March's Global Service Initiative with the local organization Class Acts, NYU Prague hosted an awards ceremony to honor the creativity and hard work of all of the writers of the "Spooky Story" entries.
Before receiving their awards, the Czech students were able to finally meet and hang out with the NYU Prague students who judged their essays. After an hour or so of games and activities, everyone came together to hear the essays of the winners from each age group. NYU Global Ambassador Myka Cue, one of the organizers of the original event, expressed how overjoyed she was by the ceremony. "The awards ceremony for Class Acts was such a heartwarming experience. It was an absolute pleasure to be in the same room with so many talented young writers, who are passionate about sharing their stories," said Cue.
Mikayla Byfield and Leah Lavigne, two other NYU Prague students who were at the event, commented on how much they loved interacting with young Czechs.
"It was incredible to see my idea of what Czech kids were like merged with how they actually are. I saw a lot of similarities between them and American kids from our sense of humor to our desire for our hard work to be acknowledged. It helped me draw a deeper connection to Prague and its people," said Byfield. Lavigne added that "it was a rewarding experience to get to encourage these students to keep writing and practicing their English."
David Koutesh and Adéla Koulová were both first place winners in their respective categories. Below are excerpts from their pieces:
David Koutesh: Hamster's Nightmare
"It was a dark and stormy night. Hamster was coming back from
his hunt for seeds. He was about half a kilometre away from his
home when he suddenly heard an ear piercing screech. Scared
hamster looked at the sky, giant eagle was there, it looked
hungry and disturbed by the thunderstorm. Eagle looked upon
him. Hamster quickly realized that he needs to hide, so he hid
under the nearest rock. Hamster ́s heart pounded quickly, he
needed to calm down a bit to go home again. Unfortunately,
under the rock eggs resided. Snake just came home hungry
after hunting fiasco outside. Snake looked upon hamster and
jumped towards him. Hamster dodged the jump, snake landed
in its own eggs and got angry. Afterwards, hamster ran, ran and
ran as fast as he could. Eagle showed up at the sky again.
Hamster performed clever manoeuvre, he stopped and got
snake outrun him, by that, eagle swooped down and caught
snake instead. It pulled snake up to the sky and flew off.
Hamster was very close to his home, he jumped in and sat
down. He was very tired. He ate some of its seeds, hid the rest
and fell asleep immediately."
Adéla Koulová: Dead Portraits
"It was a dark and stormy night hen one man named Stuart opened his shop with his creations. Many people from neighborhood came there to buy his portraits of nature or animals and more. One day an old woman came into his small shop and asked him if he can paint her. Stuart was also a painter so Stuart painted her. The portrait was so beautiful that woman showed him everywhere. People liked him and many of them came to Stuart’s shop because They wanted to be painted as beautiful as was an old woman. One week later Stuart was reading a newspaper, suddenly he saw an old woman which he painted that she was dead! Many people were saying that she was really sick so it was sad new for Stuart. After few days another person dead, which Stuart painted but that person was really sick too. Stuart started to think that he was killing these people, but that was not possible he thought. One shady night a young beautiful blonde woman came to his shop. He liked her at once. She asked him to paint her. Stuart started thinking. She wasn’t sick so nothing could happen. He painted her and she liked Stuart’s portrait so much that she asked him out. And of course because she fancied him. After one week Stuart was getting ready for his date. But news in television told Stuart that his beautiful blonde woman is dead. He can’t get over it. He realized that he was killing all these people the whole time. Stuart decided to paint himself because he thought he deserves to die after he killed so many people and his blonde woman. He was sitting on a chair and he was painting his portrait tearfully. After one week later he died."
pictures taken by NYU Prague students Myka Cue and Robert Ramkishun