Vietnamese Talents
Vietnamese girl takes honourable mention in essay contest
  • | | June 03, 2011 07:03 PM

A young Vietnamese woman—who came to the U.S. for burn treatment and helped get a start in a Mutual Housing community—has been given an honorable mention in a local college essay contest.

Nhi Vo, Nhi Vo, News & Review essay contest honorable mention

Nhi Vo’s essay on her struggle to survive a family fire in 2000 that killed her mother and severely burned Vo and two of her sisters recently took honors in the “Sacramento News & Review” 2011 College Essay Contest.

Vo has been accepted into the University of California, Davis, where she will study cellular biology. She plans to become a doctor.

“Becoming a doctor would allow me to give back all the love and kindness that has been shown to me by my parents, sisters, doctors and counselors, social workers, and people in the community,” she wrote in the essay.

After her father’s death of cancer in late 2009, Vo raised her sisters while attending high school, dealing with family finances and continuing medical treatment.

When her family of six first moved to California, they were able to live in Mutual Housing at Lemon Hill, a community for low and modest-income residents. These Sacramento|Yolo Mutual Housing Association communities help people get back on their feet by providing modestly priced rental housing.

In high school, Vo joined the South Sacramento Coalition for Future Leaders. The coalition creates a place where youth can be safe, able to grow and realise their full potential.

“We are so proud of Nhi, not just for the wonderful essay she wrote, but for who she is and what she has done with her life,” said Emily Bender, Programme Coordinator for the coalition, who works for Mutual Housing.

Students from every high school in the region submitted essays to the Sacramento News & Review. The May 5th issue featured the top finalists. The winners received $2,011 for the first-place, $750 for the second-place and $250 for each third-place winner of a three-way-tie.

Vo was one of two chosen for an honorable mention for "The world I come from". To read her essay, go to

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