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Big Mind Learning Scholarship Contest

Please Note: The Essay Contest results will be announced this year on May 9. Thank you for your patience.

Celebrating The Art of the Personal Essay

In recognition of the richness and vitality of the personal essay, Big Mind Learning announces our SIXTH ANNUAL Scholarship Contest. We believe that students are most apt to discover their authentic voices when they write about their own lives and beliefs. We view the personal essay as an exceptional way to explore oneself and connect to others.

In celebration of this lively literary form, the Big Mind Learning Scholarship will honor students who speak their minds and examine their personal lives in clear, vivid writing.


All junior and senior high school students from the following New York counties may apply: Albany, Columbia, Rensselaer, Saratoga, Schenectady and Schoharie.

Prizes & Judging

This year we will award a first prize of $500, a second prize of $100 and a third prize of $50. We often name more than one third prize winner. In addition, we will also name ten finalists. A panel of at least four judges will select the winning essays.

Submission Guidelines

The deadline for submissions has passed. Winners will be announced on May 1, 2016.

To see last year's Essay Contest winners, click here.

For a list of all previously used essay contest quotes, click here.