In April of 2022, Auntie Bev., the Vocabulary Queen of TikTok, teamed up with DESHEA (Dandy Endowment Scholarship for Hornets in Extra Curricular Activities/Karlette Dandy-Brewster) to host an Essay Writing Contest for seniors at Hillside High School in Durham, NC. Students were asked to write an essay in 300 words or less using at least 10 Auntie Bev. vocabulary words from TikTok. The contest deadline was May 18. The essays were scored on a scale of 1-10 in three categories:

Organizational Flow



The winning essay received 80 out of a possible 90 points. Congratulations to Randal Bigelow! Here is his essay:

I have read you become unstoppable when you work on things people can’t take away from you. I feel education and the knowledge received from it will make me unstoppable. This is why college is important to me and why college has always been an option and consideration for me. Not going to college would be something that I could not cogitate

For as long as I can remember, my parents have instilled in me the valuable importance of an education. They have always told me a quality education will open all sorts of doors to opportunity, life experiences, and financial stability. In my eighteen years of living, I have come to realize what my parents have told me about education is true. Because of that, I gladly welcome my future as a college student. I don’t plan on being insouciant when it comes to my education. I care about what I learn and what I contribute to society. 

When I was a toddler just learning to talk, I have vague memories of index cards all over our house. My mom wrote words on them (lamp, light, closet, chair, door) so I would learn to pronounce and spell those words. That led me to a love of reading and books. My personal library is quite extensive, if I do say so myself. Ficton. Non-fiction. Fantasy. Mystery. Sci-fi. History. I love them all. My parents enrolled me in a pre-kindergarten program with a sought-after pre-k teacher. By the time I entered kindergarten, I was reading and comprehending at a high level.

When I got to grade school, I made it my mission to learn all I could and make good grades. I felt a personal satisfaction in being an honor student. I have made the honor roll every quarter / semester through high school. I love learning, and I love the feeling of being rewarded for my work and effort in the classroom. My academic record is nonpareiled. With all that I have learned and retained over the years, I haven’t become pedantic because I’m sure that would get on people’s nerves. 

When it was time for me to choose the high school I would attend, I chose Hillside New Tech High School. This school offered dual enrollment with our local community college, Durham Technical Community College. My goal as a freshman was to graduate with both my associate’s degree and a high school diploma. I’m at the end of my senior year, and I have achieved my goal. While I am not trying to come across as vaunt, I am very proud to share that I will be graduating with my associate’s degree on May 18th and with my high school diploma on May 26th. I will enter college as a second semester sophomore. I plan to spend my four years of college getting both my bachelor’s and master’s degrees. 

My parents, family, and their friends have advised me the college years will be a time of self-discovery and a chance to grow while being exposed to a diverse community of peers seeking similar goals. I will have the chance to use my knowledge to navigate everyday situations on my own. 

In the fall, I will be attending Belmont Abbey College. I found Belmont Abbey to be quite a convivial place, and I look forward to my time there. I plan on majoring in sports management. I will also be a member of the college baseball team. I want to pursue a career in sports management related to baseball. There’s just something about the stentorian sound of a ball being hit by a bat that I love! I am looking forward to the time I will spend in college as it will get me closer to my dream career and life. 

I will not jeopardize my future by doing something daft. I’m sure my mom will propagate all that I do in the future with her friends and following on social media like she always does. I guess she has a predilection for me since her favorite hypocorism for me is sugar lump. 

The power of education and knowledge have led me to this moment. I look forward to what happens next.