VFW kicks off of annual $30,000 Voice of Democracy scholarship competition


MENDOTA - Commander Laurie Emmer of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. Department of Illinois announced the kick-off of this year’s VFW Voice of Democracy Scholarship competition. Local high school students have the opportunity to compete for thousands of dollars in scholarships and a trip to Washington, D.C.

Students must write and record a three-to-five minute essay on the selected theme using an audio CD or flash drive and present their recording, typed essay and completed entry form to their local VFW Post by Oct. 31. The 2020 theme is, “Is This the Country the Founders Envisioned.” Students begin by competing at the local post level, then post winners will compete at the district level. The district winner will then advance to the state competition.

Each of the state first-place winners will receive a four day trip to Washington, D.C. and the chance to compete for their share of more than $150,000 in scholarships. The first-place winner receives a $30,000 college scholarship.

The National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) started the Voice of Democracy Scholarship program in 1947. The VFW became a national sponsor in the late 1950s and assumed sole responsibility for the program in 1961. The competition was created to provide students grades 9-12 the opportunity to express themselves in regard to democratic ideas and principles.

Around 40,000 students participate in the competition each year and VFW awards more than $2.1 million in educational scholarships annually.

Interested students and teachers should contact the Voice of Democracy Chairman at their local VFW Post or contact VFW State Headquarters by phone at (217) 529-6688 or e-mail the VFW Department of Illinois at [email protected] for more information.

For details visit www.vfw.org/VOD.

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