North Central College student earns finalist award in New York Times essay contest

May 26, 2015

North Central College junior Adam Lundquist earned one of four finalist titles in a nationwide New York Times college essay contest.

“Modern Love,” a popular weekly series of reader-submitted essays that explore the joys and tribulations of love, asked college students to submit personal stories of modern love for the opportunity to have their work published in the newspaper.

The contest netted nearly 1,800 entries from more than 400 colleges and universities around the country. The winner and four finalists, including Lundquist, had their essays published in the column throughout May. Lundquist’s essay appeared in the print edition on Sunday, May 24.

Lundquist, who transferred to North Central from Yale University at the start of fall term 2013, is majoring in biology and minoring in neuroscience. From Petaluma, Calif., he is a College Scholar, a contributing photographer to The Chronicle student publication, and a member of the men’s track and field team. In 2014, he was a College Conference of Illinois & Wisconsin Indoor Track & Field Champion in the 60-meter hurdles.

After hearing about the contest from a former Yale classmate, Lundquist entered his essay, which he titled “A Foggy Love,” with the intention of exploring a new avenue for creative writing rather than placing in the actual contest. The Times published the piece under the headline, “Learning To Embrace Sexuality’s Gray Areas.”

“The essay is about my learning of different types of love,” explains Lundquist. “It ultimately leads to a clearer view on what defines ‘modern love’ and a deeper, personal understanding of myself.” Lundquist aspires to earn a Ph.D. in neuroscience and enjoys expressing himself through his writing. “I feel beyond honored to have my work published in The New York Times, one of my favorite publications whose journalism, photography and writing I've always deeply respected.”

Excited to share his piece with friends, family and colleagues, Lundquist says, “I hope this will help them take a step back and re-evaluate their own relationships and open themselves to love in a deeper way.”

Click here to read “Learning To Embrace Sexuality’s Gray Areas” in The New York Times.  

By Jordan Johnson ’15