Northern Michigan University’s Center for Rural Health has announced the winners of this year’s essay competition for National Rural Health Day. The essay contest is split into three regions; East, Central and West. Meghan Hemmer, of Houghton was awarded first place in the West region, earning a 500 dollar scholarship. Kiarie Williams and Madison Couillard also won first place scholarships, from the East and Central regions respectively. The essay competition commemorates National Rural Health Day, on November 17th. The essays give an opportunity to students all over the Upper Peninsula to earn money toward higher education, and express their thoughts on a rural health related topic. This year’s prompt asked high school seniors to express two ways college students can contribute to any of the five identified keys areas of the social determinants of health outlined by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Healthy People 2030 Initiative.