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Voice of Democracy and Patriot’s Pen contests now open

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THE Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 3457 is inviting public and private schools to participate in Voice of Democracy, Patriot’s Pen and Smart/Maher Teacher Award competitions.

  • Voice of Democracy is a contest for students in Grades 9 to 12. This year’s theme is “Is this the country the founders envisioned?”

A participant must record his or her original essay, about three to five minutes long, either on a flash drive or an audio CD.

The recorded essay must be in the participant’s own voice and in English.

Interested students should email the Voice of Democracy national office at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for special instructions.

  • The Patriot’s Pen theme this year is “What is Patriotism to me?” The contest is open to students in Grades 6 to 8. Contestants must write an essay with 300 to 400 typewritten words in English with no color or graphics.
  • The Smart/Maher Teacher Award has three categories: K-5, 6-8 and 9-12. Anyone may nominate teachers who teach citizenship education at least half of the school day in a classroom environment and promote America’s history, traditions and institutions effectively. To nominate a teacher, describe him or her in 350 words or less, and why you feel your nominee should be selected.

According to Joey McDoulett, post commander, judging is completed first at the post level (Saipan), next at the district level (Marianas), and then against other entries from posts in Asia.

He said there are cash prizes for winning at each level, and the national Voice of Democracy winner will receive a $30,000 scholarship while the Patriot’s Pen winner gets $5,000.

The deadline for submission of entries is Oct. 31, 2020.

Entry forms are available at www.vfw.org

For more information, call Mariano Fajardo at 285-0613.

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