State Essay Contest


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Teachers are invited to help at the Symposium/Essay reading session. 
Details here.
[Symposium | Essay Contest | International Science/Engineering Fair]

Essay Contest

Students in Grades 7 through 12 may compete with a library research paper in the “Essay Only” segment Paper Session Competition. However, this does not rule out the possibility of personal experimentation as a supplement to the library research.


The topic for the 2023 contest is: "It's Our Turn to Lead!"

The research part of this paper should define what the topic is, how it can be implemented, and should include a commentary on your personal experience of how participating in independent research reflects the current topic.

Format of the essay:
• Choose a topic that has been developed or is being theorized.
• Support your topic’s significance through research.

Structure of the essay:
• The author must follow the essay theme of  "Houston, We Have a Problem!"
• The author must use the formal essay style that adequately expresses the chosen topic.
• The essay must be original and follow the guidelines for student essays as established in the guidebook.


Cash awards may be made for the best essays.


Essay Entry Procedures
Students are to submit to the school coordinator four copies of their essay and three copies of the Student STEM Exhibition Official Entry Form for Essay Competition. Each essay must include the Essay Cover Page.
Students should keep the original copy of their essay. Essays are to be sent as one PDF file via e-mail to - ATTN: Lucy Young on or before February 3, 2023. The physical arrangement of the essay must be as follows:

• Essay Cover Page (See this page.) Give the essay a title that is indicative of the content of the essay.

• If supplemental experimentation is used, a Safety Sheet and any applicable endorsement(s) must be attached.
• Table of Contents
• Introduction
• Body–Discussion
• Conclusion or Summary
• Reference List – A list of published articles, books, and other communications actually cited in the essay, using APA format. Do not refer to this list as a bibliography.

The essay should be 1,200 to 1,500 words. The essay should include at least 12 current references and no more than one reference to an encyclopedia. Students are to type their last name and the title of the essay at the top of each page. Papers should follow the basic rules of essay writing and should be carefully proofread. (See Symposium Paper/ Essay Checklist for helpful information.) Entries are due  February 3, 2023. This deadline will not be extended. Papers submitted after the deadline will be returned unopened to the author. For additional information, contact either the STEM Exhibition coordinator at your school or Ms.Young.