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Saturday
Sep072019

VFW Invites HS Students To Participate In Youth Scholarship Competition

Youth Scholarship Competition                                              

The VFW is dedicated to promoting patriotism and investing in our future generation. If you are a democracy-loving Smithtown East/West or Hauppague high school student interested in a $30,000 college scholarship, the Voice of Democracy Essay Contest may be for you.

2019 Voice of Democracy Essay Contest

Established in 1947, our Voice of Democracy audio-essay program provides high school students with the unique opportunity to express themselves in regards to a democratic and patriotic-themed 3-5 minute recorded essay. Each year, nearly 40,000 9-12 grade students from across the country enter to win their share of $2.1 million in educational scholarships and incentives awarded through the program. 

Up to fifteen finalists are selected from entries at the three Smithtown high schools, and are judged by the veteran Voice of Democracy committee. Local post certificates and cash scholarships are awarded to the winners.  The first place post winner goes on to compete at County, District and NY State (Department) level for additional awards. The national first-place winner receives a $30,000 scholarship paid directly to the recipient’s American university, college or vocational/technical school. A complete list of other national scholarships range from $1,000-$16,000, and the first-place winner from each VFW Department (state) wins a minimum scholarship of $1,000 and an all-expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C. 

Want to apply? Visit www.vfw.org, and read the rules and eligibility requirements, then download and complete the 2019-20 entry form. Contact your local high school essay contest coordinator for additional information on entry submittal. All student entries must be submitted by the coordinators to Smithtown VFW Post 10870 by midnight, Oct. 31

The 2019-20 essay theme is: 
“What Makes America Great”

About the 2018-19 winners …

Grace Guttieri, Smithtown HS West, won last years 1st prize at Post level, with an overall high score  of 366  out of a possible 400…. Grace’s essay went on to win County and District competition, and won 4th prize in NY State competition.  Grace read her essay at last year’s Smithtown Veterans Day Ceremony.

Christine Troll, a senior home-school student from Somerset, Pa., was named the 2018-19 Voice of Democracy national first-place winner. Christine’s speech on the theme, “Why My Vote Matters,” won her a $30,000 college scholarship. Christine was sponsored by VFW Post 554 and its Auxiliary in Somerset, Pa..

For addditional information, contact your local school coordinator or Tom Mooney, VFW Committee Chairman, at (631) 834-4128.