VFW opens essay contest

Published 7:02 pm Friday, October 20, 2017

The commander of the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 447 announced the kick-off for this year’s VFW and its ladies auxiliary Voice of Democracy scholarship competition, according to a press release. High school students in the area have the opportunity to compete in the annual audio essay competition and win thousands of dollars in scholarships, a trip to Washington, D.C., as well as dozens of other awards.

Students begin by competing at the local post level. Deadline for entries at the post is Oct. 31, and winners advance to the district level. District winners compete in the state competition, with the state winner enjoying a four-day tour in Washington, D.C., along with the winners from every state, the District of Columbia, the Pacific areas, Latin America/Caribbean and Europe.

During the more than 60 years that the VFW and its ladies auxiliary have been involved with Voice of Democracy, more than 7 million high school students have participated. Students compete  by writing and then recording a three- to five-minute audio/essay expressing their views of this year’s patriotic theme, “American History: Our Hope for the Future.”

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According to a press release, all state winners will receive at least a $1,000 national scholarship, but any one of them could win the $30,000 first-place award. A total of $146,000 in national scholarships is awarded to national finalists in addition to the scholarships and awards given at the preliminary levels of competition.

Interested students and teachers should contact Voice of Democracy Chairwoman Marilyn Danielsen  of VFW Post 447 in Albert Lea at 507-402-7080.