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2017 Cole Essay Contest

Cole Essay Contest Logo

The Annual Cole Essay Contest is accepting completed applications and essays on the topic of “How I will perpetuate my Jewish knowledge and practice as a college freshman, and why” through 1:00 PM, Friday, April 21, 2017.

The contest is open to any Columbus area Jewish high school senior graduating in Spring 2017. and winners will receive up to $1,000.  The Foundation will announce the winning essay and finalists at the JET Teen Awards Ceremony on May 17th.

The Cole Essay Contest is sponsored by the Marilyn and Stuart Cole Philanthropic Fund of the Columbus Jewish Foundation.

Click here to read the 2016 winning essay.

Click here to read the 2015 winning essay.

Click here to read the 2014 winning essays.

Click here for the essay contest guidelines.

Click here to access the essay contest application.


About the Coles

Marilyn & Stuart ColeFor the past three decades the Coles (pictured left) have been active participants in the Columbus Jewish community. Their charitable pursuits include the Marilyn and Stuart Cole Philanthropic Fund of the Columbus Jewish Foundation, as well as funding of the Columbus Torah Academy Physical Education Cup, Reading Recovery Program and the Hebrew Language Listening Lab. Marilyn and Stuart Cole, and Leonore z’l and Larry z’l Zusman were the 2011 honorees of the Columbus Torah Academy Scholarship Dinner. At the JCC, the Coles have been in the forefront of funding the Yachad Program and the JET Culture Clubs. They are active members of Beth Jacob Congregation and Congregation Torat Emet Main Street Synagogue.

The essay contest, “is named in memory of my husband’s parents,” said Mrs. Cole, a clinical social worker at Jewish Family Services. According to Stuart Cole, an attorney retired from the Ohio Attorney General’s office, “My Father had strong beliefs about the importance of Jewish education that were shared by my Mother. Today, Jewish education and identity are an integral part of our lives and the lives of our three children, Sara (Ilan) Pearlman, Ely (Talia) Cole, and Rena (Adam) Gardin. We are blessed with several grandchildren and take great pride in knowing that our children share our beliefs about the importance of passing on a strong Jewish identity to the next generation.”