Local high school students earned honors in the districtwide Soapbox Challenge, a speech contest held recently at McBride High School.
The Long Beach Unified School District held the competition in collaboration with the nonprofit Mikva Challenge, which promotes civic engagement among youth.
The event asked high school students to deliver two-minute speeches answering the question, “What is the most important issue facing your community?”
Winning first place was AJ Walker from Wilson Classical High School for a speech on long holding periods for medical referrals. Earning second place was Amelia Haynes from Poly High School for a speech on stigmas surrounding mental illness. Elizabeth Bigham, also from Poly, won third place for a speech on sexual harassment. A Student Choice Award went to Melanie Ung from Lakewood High School for her speech about student etiquette and behavior.