For Your Students

December 21, 2005 9 min read
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Following are application dates for student contests, scholarships, and internships. Asterisks (*) denote new entries.

The National Honor Society and its sponsor, the National Association of Secondary School Principals, award $1,000 scholarships to 200 high school seniors who are NHS members and who have shown outstanding character, earned good grades, performed service projects, and demonstrated strong leadership skills. Each society chapter may nominate two members. Contact: NASSP, NHS National Office, 1904 Association Dr., Reston, VA 20191-1537; (703) 860-0200, ext. 252; fax (703) 476-5432; e-mail;

*January 20 ART AND DESIGN
Nonviolent Peaceforce, an international nonprofit peacekeeping organization, is seeking creative and original artwork, ideas, and designs for the National Junior Peace Bond Design Competition. Students in grades K-12 are eligible to submit designs that promote peace; winning designs will be featured on the 2006 Peace Bonds, which are purchased by people throughout the world to support peacekeeping teams in the field. More than $2,000 in prizes will be awarded. Winning artists will receive national recognition and publicity, as well as a trip to Washington, D.C., for an award presentation and exhibition. Complete guidelines and entry forms are available on the Web site. For more information, contact: Natalie Brenner, Nonviolent Peaceforce, (612) 871-0005; e-mail;

The National Council of Teachers of English accepts nominations for its 2006 Promising Young Writers Program. Eighth grade language arts teachers are encouraged to nominate students and submit an example of each nominee’s best-written work along with a $5 nomination fee per student. All participants receive a certificate. Complete instructions are available on the Web site. Contact: Promising Young Writers Program, NCTE, 1111 W. Kenyon Rd., Urbana, IL 61801; e-mail;

*January 31 TECHNOLOGY
Toshiba and the National Science Teachers Association invite U.S. and Canadian K-12 students to submit entries for ExploraVision. Student teams consider the impact of science and technology on society and how innovative thinking can change the future, then propose a new technology that might exist in 20 years. First-place team members each receive a $10,000 U.S. savings bond; second-place members receive $5,000 bonds. Contact: Toshiba/NSTA ExploraVision Awards, 1840 Wilson Blvd., Arlington, VA 22201; (800) EXPLOR-9; e-mail;

*February-March SCHOLARSHIPS
Optimist International invites students from the United States, Canada, and the Caribbean to compete for scholarships. Students younger than 19 as of December 31, 2005, write 400- to 500-word essays on the topic “I’m Unique Because. ... ” Local Optimist Clubs send winners to district contests to compete for a $650 scholarship. District winners participate in the international essay contest, competing for scholarships worth $2,000 to $5,000. For the oratorical contest, students younger than 16 as of December 31, 2005, present a four- to five-minute speech titled “My Future Is Bright Because. ... ” District prizes range from $500 to $1,500. In addition, students through grade 12 who are certified as having a hearing loss of 40 decibels or more may address the same topic using sign language, oral presentation, or both in the Communication Contest for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing; the district-level prize is a $1,500 college scholarship. All submissions should be made to a local Optimist Club. For information on local clubs, contact: Optimist International, Attn: Programs Department, 4494 Lindell Blvd., St. Louis, MO 63108; (800) 500-8130, ext. 235; e-mail;

The National Society Daughters of the American Revolution awards the Dr. Aura-Lee A. and James Hobbs Pittenger American History Scholarship, which provides $2,000 a year for up to four years, to a graduating senior who will pursue concentrated study of at least 24 credit hours in American history and government. Renewal is based on an annual transcript review by the national chairman. Students must be sponsored by a local DAR chapter. An application form and fact sheet may be obtained by sending a self-addressed, stamped envelope to NSDAR. Contact: NSDAR, Office of the Reporter General, Attn: Scholarships, 1776 D St. N.W., Washington, DC 20006; (202) 879-3292;

The Young Epidemiology Scholarship Competition for original student research offers scholarships to high school juniors and seniors who conduct outstanding research projects that apply epidemiological methods of analysis to a health- related issue. The competition is designed to inspire talented students to investigate the many behavioral, biological, environmental, and social factors that affect health and to identify ways to improve the health of the public. Students who are citizens or permanent residents of the United States and who are either homeschooled or enrolled in a high school in the United States, Puerto Rico, Guam, the U.S. Virgin Islands, American Samoa, Midway, Wake Island, or the Mariana Islands are eligible for the competition. Only one project per student will be accepted. Up to 120 students will share as much as $456,000 in scholarships, with the top two national winners each receiving $50,000. Registration and submissions must be made online. Contact: YES, (800) 626-9795, ext. 5932; e-mail;

*February 4 PHILOSOPHY
The Fifth Annual Kids Philosophy Slam asks K-12 students to write their personal thoughts and observations about the question “Which is more powerful, Fear or Hope?” Essays must be 500 words or fewer, preferably typed. Students in grades K-5 may paint or draw a picture, write a poem or short story, or use any creative combination of words and pictures. Teachers are encouraged to submit students’ class assignments. Each grade level has a national winner and runner-up. More than $5,000 in prizes is awarded, and the school with the most entries receives $1,000 in Kids Philosophy Slam merchandise. The top four high school winners share $2,000 in savings bonds and debate the question in Washington, D.C., at the Philosophy Slam Championship in May. International entries are encouraged. Complete rules are available on the Web site. Contact: Kids Philosophy Slam, P.O. Box 406, Lanesboro, MN 55949; (507) 467-0107; e-mail;

Students in grades 3-12 who attend rural schools are invited to participate in the National Rural Education Association Foundation’s essay contest. Elementary school entries are limited to 250 words; middle and high school entries may be up to 500 words. Essays are written in response to prompts and are judged on originality, focus, mechanics, and overall quality. The winning elementary student receives $250, and the runner-up gets $100. The top middle and high school entries each earn $400; runners-up each win $200. Contact: Dr. Bob Mooneyham, Executive Director, NREA Headquarters, University of Oklahoma, 820 Van Vleet Oval, Room 227, Norman, OK 73019; (405) 325-7959; e-mail;

*February 5 PEACE ESSAY
The United States Institute of Peace announces the National Peace Essay Contest for students in grades 9-12. For the 2005-06 contest, applicants’ compositions must examine the topic “Controlling the Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons.” First-place winners from each state receive $1,000 college scholarships and compete for national awards of $2,500 to $10,000. National award amounts include state awards. First-place state winners also are invited to attend an expenses-paid awards program in Washington, D.C., in June. Contact: USIP, 1200 17th St. N.W., Suite 200, Washington, DC 20036; (202) 429-3854; e-mail;

The Horace Mann company, an Illinois-based firm that sells insurance and retirement annuities to educators, invites graduating high school seniors to apply for the Horace Mann Scholarship Program. Parents or legal guardians must be employed by a U.S. public school or college. Applicants must have at least a B average. One $5,000 scholarship will be given. Residents of Hawaii, New Jersey, and New York are not eligible to apply. Contact: Horace Mann Student Scholarship Program, (217) 788-5197;

*February 15 ART AND POETRY
River of Words, a poetry and art program cofounded by former Poet Laureate Robert Hass and Berkeley writer Pamela Michael and affiliated with the Library of Congress Center for the Book, announces the 10th annual International Environmental Poetry and Art Contest. K-12 students are encouraged to submit poetry or art about watersheds. Poetry is accepted in English, Spanish, and American Sign Language. Two-dimensional art is accepted in all media. Winners are chosen in four age categories in both poetry and art. One international winner, eight national grand-prize winners, and their parents will be flown from their homes to be honored at a celebration at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. Contact: River of Words, P.O. Box 4000-J, Berkeley, CA 94704; (510) 548-POEM; fax (510) 548-2095; e-mail;

EF Educational Tours announces the EF Global Citizen Awards, an annual essay contest for college-bound seniors. Ten U.S. students and two Canadian students each receive a 10-day, expenses-paid educational tour of Europe. Applicants must be nominated by their schools and are selected based on an essay discussing what it means to be a global citizen. Application materials and the complete essay question are available on the Web site. Contact: Jen Flynn, Global Citizen Program, EF Educational Tours, EF Center Boston, 1 Education St., Cambridge, MA 02141-1883; (617) 619-1591; e-mail;

*February 28 FICTION
Highlights for Children
seeks stories that explore the spirit of holiday celebrations for children from 2 to 12 for its 27th annual fiction contest. Individuals age 16 or older are eligible to submit stories. Submissions should not exceed 800 words and may be considerably shorter for younger readers, and they must be postmarked January 1 or later. The word count should be indicated in the upper-right corner of the first page. Three winners receive $1,000 each and publication of their stories in Highlights. Other contest submissions are considered for purchase by the magazine. Contact: Fiction Contest, Highlights for Children, 803 Church St., Honesdale, PA 18431; (570) 253-1080.

—Ashtar Analeed Marcus and Marianne D. Hurst

A version of this article appeared in the January 01, 2006 edition of Teacher Magazine


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