The American Prospect High School Essay Contest

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The American Prospect 2020 Essay Contest:
Open to high school students across the country

Read a book, write an essay, and you just might win part of $30,000 in cash prizes

CLICK FOR COMPLETE DETAILS ON THE ENTRY PAGE

High school juniors and seniors may write 1,000 to 1,600 words on one of these two books:

High school freshmen and sophomores may write up to 1,200 words on one of these two books:

Book links listed are for free e-book resources, via Overdrive.

Winners will be awarded for first, second and third place at both levels, with up to 40 additional honorable mentions. The Prospect will publish all the winning essays online at Prospect.org, with a selection in print.

The deadline for submissions has been extended to May 31, 2020.

Requirements

  • Read the introductory essay (linked below).
  • Choose one book to read.
  • Review the questions for the book you choose (linked below).
  • Submit your essay along with your verifiable contact information through this form.
  • Fill out the brief survey on the experience, and we will take it from there!

Introductory Essay

Essay questions for Juniors and Seniors

Essay questions for Freshman and Sophomores

Prizes:

  • Juniors and Seniors: First place $10,000; second place $5,000; third place $2,500. Honorable mentions: 20 at $100 each.
  • Freshmen and Sophomores: First place $5,000; second place $2,500; third place $1,000. Honorable mentions: 20 at $100 each.

CLICK HERE TO GO TO THE ENTRY FORM.

Please share this contest with high school students you know! 

CLICK TO DOWNLOAD A PRINTABLE PDF TO SHARE WITH STUDENTS

This essay contest is a partnership between The American Prospect and Omidyar Network, a philanthropic investment firm dedicated to harnessing the power of markets to create opportunity for people to improve their lives. Established in 2004 by philanthropists Pam and Pierre Omidyar, the founder of eBay, the organization has committed more than $1 billion to innovative for-profit companies and nonprofit organizations to catalyze economic and social change. To learn more, visit www.omidyar.com, and follow on Twitter @omidyarnetwork.