Read clips of last year's winners inspiring essays below in response to a question about sportsmanship and integrity.

10U Winner: Lola Lia, Boys and Girls Club 

"Tennis has changed my life in many ways. It has taught me many life lessons that I'll use throughout my life. One way is it helps me bond and work well with others. For example, when we are practicing at the Wake Forest Boys and Girls Club tennis program, I need to be able to coorperate and work at the same time. While doing that to practice passing back and forth, I need a partner, so we must talk back and forth to be able to get the hang of it. We also must work with each other and like each other so we can get the job done.


The National Junior Tennis and Learning (NJTL) network is a nationwide network of community tennis organizations seeking to develop the character of young people through tennis and education. NJTLs are unique because they offer a variety of on-court programming and also educational and life skill components designed to enhance a child’s overall development. The RTA is an NJTL chapter.

10U National Winner: Krish Attaluri, RTA
"During a tennis match or a tennis tournament, perseverance  helps me to focus on the next point or the next match after I lose a point or a match. It helps me understand that I can't  win every point or the match but staying focused, continuing to work hard on my skills and showing perseverance will always help me in tennis, baseball, and school." 

The Question

This year marks the 50th anniversary of NJTL. What specific impact do you hope your chapter can make in your community today that you would want remembered 50 years from now?

Start Working on Your Essay Now! 

We know that community means different things to different people - your community is the people and places around you, like school, your neighborhood and your sports activities. How is that community affected when tennis is present? How do you want tennis in your community to be remembered in the future?


Raleigh Tennis Association is hosting a local NJTL Essay contest for 10U, 14U and 18U players. Essays will be judged by a local panel and a winner will be awarded in each category. Winners will receive an exciting prize package. Participants are asked to write an essay answering the following :

2018 National NJTL Essay Contest winners

2018 Local NJTL Essay Contest Winners


18U Winner: Benjamin Jones, RTA
“Although I am now 14 years old, I still remember my childhood television hero, Thomas the Train Engine, saying, "I think I can, I think I can, I think I can" as he chugged heavy loads up a steep hill. I believe everyone, including myself, has a heavy load to carry up the hill of life. Tennis has taught me an important lesson --to keep chugging up the hill until I reach the top. My will to win applies not only to the tennis court, but also to my schoolwork."

14U Winner: Tory Mullis,  Boys and Girls Club
“Tennis is a fast paced, vigorous sport, in which anticipation is required. Tennis can provide you many health, as well as mental benefits, that improve who you are as an individual, as well how physically fit you can be. If you ever decide to get into tennis, you will find yourself improving concentration, your mood, handling stress under pressure, maintaining a healthy weight, and even getting more into shape. Sure you might think tennis is just hitting a ball with a racket, but there are many features that you need to acquire. Tennis involves determination and agility. If you really get into tennis, you will find your self-confidence advancing each time you gain, yet, another point."

2017 Local NJTL Essay Contest Winners

10U Winner: Brianna Stewart
14U Winner: Patricia "Grace" Koehler
​18U Winner: Josiah Farrar