Alexa Roe, 10th grader at River Ridge High School, places 3rd in civics cartoon contest

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Alexa Roe’s cartoon entry took 3rd place in the Wisconsin Newspaper Association Foundation the 2022 Wisconsin Civics Games Editorial Writing & Cartoon Contest.

By Melissa R. Collum

Each year the Wisconsin Newspaper Association Foundation (WNA) holds the Wisconsin Civics Games Editorial Writing & Cartoon Contest. The contest works to bring to awareness and understanding of the First Amendment to the public and to support educational initiative for students.
The contest is open to all Wisconsin middle and high school students. This year students from 22 school across the state participated in the contest. First-place winners in each contest receive $500, second-place winners will receive $250, third-place winners will receive $100 and honorable mention recipients will receive $50.
Alexa Roe, a 10th grader at River Ridge High School was encouraged to enter the cartoon contest by her teacher Mr. Ryan Fox. Alexa’s teacher from a prior year, Fox approached her with the details of the contest. “Well, being the small school that we are, I was aware of Alexa’s artistic prowess because of Mr. Troy Dilley’s boasting during lunch. He is our Art teacher,” states Fox. “I had already had her in Civics; a class in which she excelled.  So, I simply asked her if she was interested. I actually didn’t help her at all. She did show me her creation before submission, but I really had zero input. It was all her own effort and ingenuity, and we could not be more proud!”
The WNA prompt for the contest was very board - submit a cartoon with a First Amendment theme. “The message was all my own. I was pondering how to get it through and how my ideas to be shown,” states Roe. “Today people are told things and they just believe them. I wanted people to go out and say things that they believe in; rather than just believing everything they are told or being quite about it. I feel like it is important to find something that you are passionate about instead of just going along with everything.”
Roe plans to submit another cartoon in next years’ competition, if the prompt is different.  When asked if she had advice for other students about entering their work in this or other contests, Roe offered the following, “Don’t be afraid to enter contests. I feel like people don’t think they are good at some things, but they have never tired to do it. When I did this I did not expect much, but I got third so it was cool to get something. I really did not know how to put together a good cartoon, I just tried my best.”
A complete list of winners and their entries can be viewed at
The WNA Foundation created the contest in response to declining civics education in schools. The Foundation also hosts the Wisconsin Civics Games, during which high school students compete to answer civics-related questions in head-to-head matches. The preliminary regional competitions will be held virtually on April 13-14, with the top 12 teams advancing to the state finals on May 12 at the Wisconsin State Capitol. Members of the winning team will each be awarded $2,000 toward tuition to a Wisconsin college or university of their choice.
Educators and students interested in participating in the Games can sign up online at through Feb. 20. Participants will receive a textbook to help them prepare for the Games, as well as access to several online resources. Learn more at


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