Mar 10
lorenyoung's picture

Emerald Ash Borer

The ash tree is a very important tree in Vermont’s landscape.  Ash have beautiful diamond-shaped bark patterns and they stand out in a forest due to their tall and straight lines. 

To me, ash trees are iconic. They make the Green Mountains green in the spring and summer, and turn to vivid orange hues in the fall. My dad and I find morel mushrooms growing in the nitrogen-rich soil at the base of our ash trees. They are known for having great, full tops, and bring good value in the timber market. Birds love ash trees because they are high enough to keep away predators, and deer rely on ash trees as they eat the buds off the young tops in the winter. 
Oct 13

College Essay Workshop -- Online Version

For those who couldn't make the YWP-VSAC College Essay workshop Oct. 14 (it was pretty awesome -- thanks to the seniors who attended), you can go to our online version. From now until Oct. 31, access resources, help & feedback. 


May 16
Chook's picture

Soldiers That Fight

There are a lot of soldiers out there that fight for our country and they don’t just fight for the U.S.A. There are other soldiers that fight for their country. Some legendary soldiers are Alvin York and Henry Jhonson. You might not know these legendary soldiers but I know what they did.

    Soldiers are the people that fight for us. They fight for mothers and fathers who love their families. They fight for people that don’t have homes and just regular people that live their lives normally each day.The soldiers are people that pray to live each night, each morning and every day. They don’t expect to go to the military one day and then come back the other. They expect to be there for months and even years.
May 11
essay challenge: Happiness is ...
Chook's picture


May 01
Yellow Sweater's picture

Call Me by Your Name, Hafiz, and the Poetics of Queer Love


I finally watched Call Me by Your Name last week. I know I’m five years late, but I’m glad I waited.

Apr 06
BunnyDude's picture

The Neuron: Messengers of the Body

The Neuron: Messengers of the Body
Apr 04
gracesmutko's picture

24 hours, 86,400 seconds, 1 day.

My grandpa is the buoy that keeps me afloat. My lifeboat, my rock, my home. 

24 hours, 86,400 seconds, 1 day. Over the course of the days, 25,200 seconds are spent reading, writing, and solving, while the rest are spent running, playing, practicing, and of course, sleeping. Of the ones not occupied, the moments I find most pleasurable are the seconds between receiving and reading texts from my grandfather, as well as the ones I spend with him. 

In the days of spring, we would sit on his back porch, under a tree, talking about our days. The simplicity of it all was admirable.

I would fall asleep into the days of summer, waking up and finding him gardening under the sun. Vines of morning glories straddled the fence as sunflower stalks shot into the sky. 

Dancing into the colorful leaves of fall, I used to see whirlybirds falling from that same spring tree, my grandma always making sure my grandfather swept them off the deck. 
Mar 21


Noah. Noah. 4 letters, two syllables, sweet and simple like a shortcake. This is the name that my mom decided to choose for me when I came into this world. This is the name that is called out for attendance, where I would proudly shout “here!” This is the name my friends call me by. This is the name that whenever called out is often confused with the word “no.” This is the name that will go down in people’s minds when I introduce myself. This is me, I am Noah. Noble, knowing, nice Noah.


Mar 20


It’s a cool, brisk, Friday evening. You can feel the wind hit your face and make you tear up as you walk along the colorful, energetic streets that highlight your every step of the way and illuminate your footsteps. Just along Division Street, you can feel the cars zooming by the street and making your ears feel numb. You can hear the cries and laughs of children playing in the playgrounds, and the sounds of children running and falling to the ground and scraping their knees. You can hear the cries and shouts of worried parents calling out for the children, and the sound of smooth cotton jackets hugging their mothers and fathers with smiles as big as the moon which has yet to come. You can hear the glass bottles clanking and the men and women laughing and shouting “Salud!” which means “good health” in Spanish. The happiness in the night can be heard from the heart of downtown, and it truly makes up the heartbeat of the town that is Chicago.


Mar 14
essay challenge: Escape
Chook's picture

Da Escape

It’s my first time going on a plane and it is scary. But I will deal with it.Though the flight is long and I am nervous, I am also happy because I get to go to Florida.It is going to be a four hour trip. My mom is in the same seat section and my sister and I are going to be at the window seat.

I can't wait to go to Florida! I hope I get to go fishing and catch something like a grouper, not the Goliath Grouper. They are the size of cars and weigh like two hundred lbs to seven hundred pounds. I love to fish but I am not too strong.                                                     

Four hours later we got to the beach and the waves were crashing on the shore.Then we got to the dock and went on the Cruise ship. It is huge with so many people and rooms. The water crashing on the ship, the seagulls flying in the distance and the fish jumping.
Feb 09
essay challenge: Lifeline

Tree Thoughts

Tree Thoughts

    Trees, we need them. I wouldn’t say that most people love trees, they’re just kind of there, I guess. It’s like grass, nobody hates it or anything, it just exists. Trees are more important than grass though, by a longshot. They do a much better job of sucking in CO2 and supply us with more materials. I (like most people) think trees are pretty great, I love climbing them and picking their fruit, or draining syrup from them in the winter. Climbing a tree is kinda scary though because you never know what branch is going to break or what little critter is going to emerge and bite your finger. 
Feb 01
essay challenge: Lifeline

Lifeline: A YWP Project of Prose and Trees

To really feel a forest canopy we must use different senses, and often the most useful one is the sense of imagination. -Joan Maloof

Jan 18
essay challenge: Sixth
Summit House-WCS's picture

Danger Intuition

I have so many ideas for a sixth sense for human beings, but one, in particular, stands out to me. Examples include the ability to do any one talent of your choosing fantastically, and a heightened sense of intuition. But, the ability that I think will be the most beneficial and crucial with our current generations, is the ability to predict, and sense danger. This sense would be major in our society because it could help prevent despicable calamities, and in doing so, save a lot of peoples’ lives. For example, if you could sense that someone is about to murder you, you could prevent that from happening. Another example of this is if someone is thinking about assaulting you, and in doing so, hurting you physically and emotionally, you could stop that person from committing that action towards you. You could just rip out your pepper spray, and shower them with the acid-y chemicals. Pshhh!!!! After that, they wouldn’t dare lay a finger on you, let alone harm you in any way. 
Jan 11
Yellow Sweater's picture

An Unraveling

I recently came across a translation of Euripedes’s Medea by David Kocas. It felt more like an encounter really, like I'd come across Medea herself: an icon in a barren church, a window into God’s abandoned feminine half, a woman burning with grief. Yes, Medea is a political play. Yes, it engages in a conversation around topics strikingly relevant to a modern mind: xenophobia, misogyny, distrust of intellectuals. Yes, even the characters seem reminiscent of modern tropes; a Gen Z-er might call Jason a manipulate, mansplain, manwhore. But at its heart, Euripides’s Medea is the story of a woman, a woman robbed of everything that, in Ancient Greece, constituted her womanhood: her home, her family, her husband. Medea is the story of a woman forced to reckon with the existential grief of having to redefine herself completely. 
Jan 11
essay challenge: Hardship
abagail.carson15's picture


Basketball has been my life for as long as I can remember. It’s the biggest commitment I’ve had to make in my life. Hundreds of hours spent on the court, watching tape, thinking about ways to improve. When I step onto the court and get into my flow, there’s an overwhelming rush. My mind is cleared of every problem from the day. But as much joy as it brings me, there’s also more pressure than I can explain. I’ve been placed in the spotlight as someone who’s supposed to bring the team together and perform. With the weight of my coaches, one of them being my father, my teammates, and my own expectations there have been times that I’ve crumbled. Basketball is as much a mental game as it is physical. You have to be able to see everything at once, read your defenders and your teammates. Your brain is in constant motion with your body. But I’ve also learned that there’s such a thing as thinking too much.
Jan 11

The Door

I walk along these Halls and I think about how untarnished these little Birds and Statues and oddities are; they are all each consumed in their own Fantasies, vying for a lovely Lime-Green Berry when there’s a Bloodred one up much higher. I think about the true nature of Man and if Valor was a real trait, if People were not so shallow-minded and instead gave out gentleness like the lapping Waves of the Sea. I think about my own seemingly crushing troubles, and cannot realize that my troubles are large and looming because I made them so. Because I, too, am part of Mankind, and Man is simply prone to such ignorances. 
Dec 28
Yellow Sweater's picture

Prayer Wheel or Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone

At the beginning of December, I found myself on Capitol Hill for a poetry reading. I had some time to spare, so I walked around the neighborhood’s green-space, Cal Anderson Park. If you were paying close attention to the news, you might recognize the name as the heart of the former Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone, a self-declared anarchist community in the middle of Seattle. Ground Zero of the Culture War. A Beautiful Desperate Experiment. A Necessary Disaster. America.  

The park was a little rough around the edges: graffiti on the cement, empty soda cans and drug-needles underneath the picnic tables. There were only a couple of people, wrapped in their puff-jackets, trudging through the puddles. The rainbow crosswalk, the rainbow bridge leading over the scarred road, had a fresh coat of paint. The grass was dulled by winter. 
Dec 21
lilnoreault's picture

The Three Words

So hard to breath
when they just won’t come out.
But the more it hurts
the more it needs to be said
The words that nobody wants to hear
But at the same time, dying for them to come out.
They mean so so much 
It could knock somebody right off their feet
It could sound so sweet 
Or maybe it’s the opposite?
“I love you”
Could be the beginning or the end of a relationship 
But when the person can’t be read like a book
All you can do is read between the lines
But when you miss the key hints
that they don’t really like you it’s hard to see.
That this love
Isn’t real or in fact was never truly there
and will never be there



Dec 10
Chook's picture

The World of Pokemon

Dec 09
essay challenge: Holidays
Summit House-WCS's picture

Many Merry Christmases

 When I think of the holidays many Images dance through my head.   The first thing to come to mind is my advent calendar.    I picture the excitement as I count down the days until Christmas.   I see myself savoring the smooth and decorative chocolates.
  A few chocolates later the thought of decorating flows through my head.   We lug up all the totes, first the elves, then the lights, then the ornaments.  My family gathers in the living room sprinkling colorful trinkets everywhere.   I picture my sisters and I picking out the perfect spots to place the elves.   I Imagine my mom counting to make sure all 30 elves are up.