Patriot's Pen Essay Contest
WHAT IS THE PATRIOTS PEN PROGRAM? -
Conducted nationwide, this VFW-sponsored youth essay competition gives
students in grades 6 through 8 an opportunity to write essays
expressing their views on democracy and patriotism with the prospect of
winning money for college.
The top 46 national winners all receive at least
$500. The first-place award is $5,000 plus an all-expense-paid trip to
Washington, D.C. for the winner and a parent or guardian.
The theme for Patriot's Pen for 2013-2014 is "What
Patriotism Means to Me." To qualify, all entries must be
submitted to a sponsoring VFW Post by November 1, 2013.
The entry form which also shows the complete
contest rules and how essays are judged can be downloaded from this
Students in the Lombard, Illinois, area should
download the form 2013-2014 Patriot's
Pen Entry Form and send it to a sponsoring VFW Post in their area.
THE RULES Each student should complete
and sign the student entry form portion on Page 1 of the form, staple
the form to the essay, and sent it to the VFW Lilac Post 5815,
Patriot’s Pen Chairperson, P. O. Box 1912, Lombard, IL 60148, by
November 1, 2013. Be sure to read and follow the rules on this
website and on the entry form.
The essays are evaluated by members of the Post
and Ladies Auxiliary. The winners at the VFW Lilac Post 5815 level
each receive a small cash award, the opportunity to advance to the
District (regional) level, and an invitation to a party in January 2014
for the winners, along with their parents and teachers.
Who can enter? - Patriot’s Pen is open
to all students who are in grades 6, 7, and 8 in fall 2012 and are
enrolled in public, private, or parochial schools in the U.S., its
territories or its possessions. Home-schooled students also are
eligible. Dependents of U.S. military or civilian personnel in
overseas schools can participate too. (Foreign exchange students and
former winners that placed in the National finals are excluded from the
What do I need to enter? - All
essays should be typewritten in English with no color or graphics and
cannot be less than 300 words or greater than 400 words in length.
(Essays under or over these word amounts will be eliminated.) Every
word is counted regardless of length. The essay title (theme) or added
footnotes do not contribute to the word count.
In no way may contestants identify themselves in
their essay. Do not put your name on your essay. The entry form
is your essay’s cover sheet. Secure the Official Student Entry
Form with a staple or other fastener on top of your essay. Essays must
be written exclusively for this competition. Use of the same essay for
other competitions will result in disqualification. Contestants are
allowed to enter only once (one Post competition). Contestants found
in violation of this rule will face elimination from the competition
and will be required to return any and all prize money awarded or
received. The essay must be a contestant’s original work and a product
of the contestant’s own thinking. The approach to the Patriot’s Pen
theme should be positive and clearly focused. Poetry is not
acceptable. Quotations may be used sparingly if plainly identified
wherever used. A contestant’s teacher, counselor, or parent may check
the essay for punctuation, grammar, and/or spelling; but the content
must remain the contestant’s. Contestants will be judged on the basis
of their essay alone and are not required to present the essay orally.
All essays become the property of the Veterans of Foreign Wars. The VFW
retains non-exclusive rights to use your essay and likeness in the
promotion and execution of the organization’s programs and activities.
|The photos below were taken at the
Patriot's Pen Award Dinner on January 30, 2010.
Patriot's Pen, a VFW-sponsored essay writing
contest, is a nationwide competition that gives students in grades 6,7,
and 8 the opportunity to write essays expressing their views on
George Miller, Commander of VFW Post 5815,
and Chris Breyne, its Ladies Auxiliary President, present Evan Grove
with his award as the VFW Post 5815 winner in the 2009 Patriot's Pen
contest. The theme for the 2009-2010 contest was "When Is the
Right Time To Honor Our Military Heroes?"
These pictures were taken at the dinner on
January 30, 2010, for all the Patriot's Pen winners in the 19th
District VFW and Ladies Auxiliaries. The 19th District winner then
goes to the state competition in Springfield, IL.
From left to right are George Miller, Chris
Breyne, Evan Grove, Sue Grove, Perry Grove, and Julia Grove (Evan's
parents and sister).
This page was
last updated October 31, 2013.