NOTE: Many of these have not released their due dates yet. I'll update as I find out the deadlines for the 2018-2019 school year. Keep checking back in!
Fleet Reserve Association Americanism Essay Contest (Deadline: December 1, 2018)
Grand National Prize: $5,000
Regional Winner: $2,500
Length: 350 words or less. (Guys, this is literally a page.)
Prompt: What freedom of speech means to me.
JFK: Profile in Courage Essay Contest (Deadline: January 18, 2019)
First Prize: $10,000 for you, $500 for your school and invitation to JFK Presidential Library in May
Second Prize: $3,000 for you
Five Finalists: $1,000 for you
All winners receive a hardcover copy of Profiles in Courage by John F. Kennedy.
Length: 700-1000 words, using at least five varied sources (see site for more info)
Prompt: Describe and analyze an act of political courage by a U.S. elected official who served during or after 1917, the year John F. Kennedy was born. Include an analysis of the obstacles, risks, and consequences associated with the act. The essay may concern an issue at the local, state, national, or international level. Use at least five varied, reliable sources.
We the Students (Bill of Rights Institute) (Deadline: February 14, 2019, 11:59 PM)
You need to sign up here.
First Prize: $5,000 for you, plus scholarship to Constitutional Academy
Six Runners-Up: $1,250 each
Eight Honorable Mention: $500 each
Prompt: What are the essential qualities of a citizen in your community in 21st century America?
Gilder-Lehrman Civil War Essay Contest (Deadline: Monday, February 25, 2019, 5 p.m.)
First Prize: $1,000 for you, $500 for CB West
Second Prize: $750 for you
Third Prize: $500 for you
Honorable Mention: Seven prizes for $100 each
Length: Approximately 1500 words
NEW THIS YEAR: Documentary category! See instructions for details.
Prompt: Various prompts that you can find on the page, all dealing with the Civil War. The key is use of at least five primary sources and 3-5 secondary sources (good ones, not "about.com"). We already know how to do this, so it's no sweat.
League of Women Voters Video Contest (Deadline: March 1, 2018)
First Prize: $1000
Length: 30-second video
Prompt: What Makes Democracy Work?
Confidence in democracy among millenials is at an all time low, argues the PA League of Women Voters.
Accusatiosn of voter fraud, gerrymandered districts, concerns about money in politics and more discourage participation and undermine faith in our democratic process.
How can citizens engage in ways that strengthen democracy?
What reforms might make our democracy stronger?
What values are essential to support our democratic structure?
Who is responsible for keeping democracy healthy?
See rules and past winner as palwv.org/videocontest/.
American Foreign Service Association High School Essay Contest (Deadline: March 15, 2019, 11:59 p.m.)
First Prize: $2500, trip to DC to meet a member of the State Department's leadership, full tuition for Semester at Sea educational voyage
Second Prize: $1,250, full tuition for National Student Leadership Conference International Diplomacy summer program
Length: 1000-1250 words
Prompt: A bit long to post here – this is more of a memo than an essay. Check out this link for specifics. You’re basically identifying two cases—one you deem successful and one you deem unsuccessful—where the U.S. pursued an integrated approach to build peace in a conflict-affected country
Facing History (Elie Weisel) Deadline: March 1st (9 a.m.) to March 15th (9 p.m.)
Prizes: Three win $5,000, seven win $1,000
Length: 500 words
2017 Facing History Together Student Essay Contest - Facing History and Ourselves
Elie Wiesel (1928-2016), the Holocaust survivor and Nobel laureate, once spoke of the importance of learning about people who were rescuers during the Holocaust. He said, “Let us not forget, after all, that there is always a moment when the moral choice is made. Often because of one story or one book or one person, we are able to make a different choice, a choice for humanity, for life.”
Please write an essay responding to Wiesel’s quote in 500 words or less. What story, book, or person has influenced your thinking about ethical decision making? What has it taught you about how you can participate as a caring, thoughtful citizen in the world around you?
George S. and Stella M. Knight Essay Contest (Sons of the American Revolution) (Deadline: December 20, 2018)
Chapter, state, and national prizes.
National First Prize: $5,000 for you, medal, recognition certificate, up to $500 for travel expense for winner and chaperone, publication in SAR Magazine
Second Prize: $2,500 for you, recognition certificate
Five Finalists: $1000 for you, recognition certificate
Length: 800-1200 words
Minimum of 5 references, 3 of which must be published works (encyclopedias or internet sources are acceptable but not considered part of the 3 published works)
Prompt: To participate, students must submit an original 800- to 1,200-word essay based on an event, person, philosophy or ideal associated with the American Revolution, Declaration of Independence, or the framing of the United States Constitution. Each student’s essay will be judged based upon its historical accuracy, clarity, organization, grammar and spelling, and correct documentation.
VFW Voice of Democracy (Deadline October 31, 2019)
Still working on details at the local level, but if Doylestown sponsors it then we can get rolling with it asap.