Greene County Students Receive iPads in Gamble Essay Contest

May 15, 2024

Winners of the 2024 John Gamble Essay Competition
Two Greene County middle school students received iPads for their winning entries in the John Gamble Essay Contest.

Greene County Students Receive iPads in Gamble Essay Contest

Two Greene County middle school students were awarded new iPads for their entries the annual Walters State John Gamble Essay Competition. 

Erica Davis, a student at West Greene Middle School, and Molly Ross, a student at Chuckey Doak Middle School, will also receive preference for the John A. Gamble Memorial Scholarship should they attend Walters State after high school. 

The competition challenged students to explain how an iPad would enhance their education. 

Davis’ language arts teacher is Jill Paris, and Ross is a student of Valerie Heater. The pair also received gift cards to purchase educational materials for their new devices.

The competition and the scholarship were both established in honor of the late John Gamble. A Morristown native, Gamble had successful careers as a newspaper reporter, an aid to a Tennessee governor and a Hollywood agent and producer. He was also a speechwriter for the late Sen. Herbert Walters, for whom the college is named. Gamble attributed his success to the fact that as a young boy he read an entire set of encyclopedias cover to cover. By age 12, he had begun corresponding with over 40 world leaders. The letters were so well written that those corresponding with him did not realize that they were writing to a young boy.

As an adult, Gamble wanted the young people from this area to learn about the world beyond East Tennessee and to contribute to it. Walters State was chosen to administer an encyclopedia endowment fund. In the beginning, the fund awarded essay winners complete sets of encyclopedias. Now, iPads are awarded so students can access the encyclopedia information and much more. 

The essay contest is held in a different county in the college’s service area each year on a rotating basis.