Sponsoring Institution: FIRE (Foundation for Individual Rights in Education)

Type: Essay contest

Eligibility: The Free Speech Essay contest is open to high school juniors and seniors in the U.S., including home schooled students and U.S. citizens studying overseas.

Application Deadline: All entries for this essay contest are due by 11:59 on December 31st. Winners are announced in February. 

Highlight: Free speech is a guaranteed right in the U.S. constitution. That right holds the most power in academic institutions, where students pose their ideas against their fellow peers and learn to develop their opinions. If you’re an American high school junior or senior passionate about free speech, look no further than the Free Speech Essay Contest! To enter this essay contest, gather your thoughts into a 700-900 word essay that responds to the provided prompt; this years prompt is to convince your friends of why free speech is better than censorship. So don’t hold back!  As far as format and style, MLA can work, but it’s entirely up to you! As long as your essay addresses the prompt, you’re in good shape. So, if you thought democracy was rewarding enough, think again! This essay contest awards seven cash prizes, ranging from $500-$10,000! Go ahead and use your freedom of speech to write a spectacular essay! It’s your right!

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