Benjamin & David Scharps Award
The Benjamin and David Scharps Award is offered annually, in accordance with a gift accepted by the State University of New York Board of Trustees under the will of Hannah S. Hirschhorn to establish the Benjamin Scharps and David Scharps Memorial Fund.
To earn the award, students are asked to write an essay on a legal topic and submit their paper for review. A selection committee reviews all submissions and selects first and second place winners. The winner will receive a check for $1,500 and a commemorative plaque, and the second place finisher will receive a check for $1,000. In addition, all contestants receive a certificate of participation.
The competition requires students to demonstrate their analytical skills in a legal opinion of approximately 2,000 words. Students are to identify the legal issues and defend a position in a scholarly manner. The essay submitted must be carefully reasoned, well researched, authoritatively documented, and precisely written.
Competition for the prize is open to SUNY students in their junior and senior year. Each campus president appoints a single faculty or staff coordinator, who endorses the essays submitted, indicating that he or she has read it and considers it of high quality and representative of the best at that campus. The Assistant Vice Chancellor for University Life at SUNY System, in consultation with the Selection Committee, then recommends the winner and runner-up to the Chancellor for approval.
First Place: Steven DeBraccio, University at Albany