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Vfw Essay Citizenship In America

The Voice of Democracy and Patriot's Pen student entry deadline is October 31 (annually), the Post judging deadline is usually November 15, the District Voice of Democracy/Patriot's Pen judgings are usually held between November 16 and December 15, and the Department (state) Voice of Democracy/Patriot's Pen judgings are usually held between December 16 and January 10. It varies (at each level of competition and from state to state) on when the judgings are held, and how the participants and winners are notified. All deadlines (except for the student entry deadline being Oct 31 at the earliest) are suggested by the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) National Headquarters Programs office, therefore there may be some slight flexibility in the actual deadlines set by each Post, District and Department (state.)

The best place to get information on results would be the local VFW Post contact person or chairman that the entry or entries were turned in to. We do not receive any results on Post, District or Department contests here at the VFW National Headquarters Programs Office; we receive only the first place Department (state) winner's name from the Department by mid January (and again, those state winner notification dates and procedures vary from state-to-state.) The National Voice of Democracy winners are all announced in Washington, DC at the Parade of Winners (held in late February or early March) - those winners will be posted online here soon after. The Patriot's Pen national winners are announced around the same time online (only the first place national Patriot's Pen winner -with one parent- will receive an all-expense paid trip to Washington, DC to be honored at the Parade of Winners.)

You can also contact your VFW Department (state) headquarters office to see if they can offer any information or assistance.  You can visit this link and look to the bottom of that webpage for “VFW State Contacts” to get your VFW state office’s phone number and e-mail.

If you still need assistance or have questions, please contact VFW Programs, youthscholarships@vfw.org 816-968-1155 from Monday-Friday 8:15 am to 4:30 pm central time.  

Fourteen winners of the Veterans of Foreign Wars Voice of Democracy scholarship contest were recently honored at a banquet at VFW Post 7573 in New Baltimore. There were 21 students honored for winning a Patriot�s Pen contest.

The Voice of Democracy audio-essay contest is for grades 9-12, and Patriot�s Pen is for grades 6-8. Students represented posts in the VFW District 5 (Macomb and Oakland Counties) in the VOD audio-essay contest on the theme �My Responsibility to America.�

The VFW promotes patriotism by offering high school students ways to earn a $30,000 college scholarship. A middle school student can earn up to $5,000.

At the post level, the Voice of Democracy first-place winners were: Alexander J. Salerno and Aiden J. Canter, Post 1146 St. Clair Shores; Alexander T. Scotta, Post 1794 Mount Clemens; Tyler Korber and Elina Arbo, Post and Auxiliary 4759 Shelby Township; Richard Raymond Tuttle III, Post 6691 Fraser; Jackie W. Wilson III, Post 6802 Richmond; Natalie P. Perilstein, Post 7373 New Baltimore; and Heather Vredenburg, Post 9021 Warren.


Local first-place Voice of Democracy winner, Elina Arbo, from the Utica Academy for International Studies, won $500 on the district level, and second place on the state level, earning a $4,000 scholarship.

On the district level, the third-place Voice of Democracy winner was Alexander J. Salerno, Lakeshore High School, sponsored by VFW Post and Auxiliary 1146 St. Clair Shores. Second place was Curtis R. Bartz, Oxford High School, sponsored by Post and Auxiliary 334 Oxford.

Winners in the Patriot�s Pen contest at the district level were: third place ($100), Brody M. McIntosh, Anchor Bay Middle School, Post and Auxiliary 7573 New Baltimore; and second place ($200) was Tyler J. Sitka, Brandon Middle School, Post 582 Ortonville. First place ($300) was Anand Seetharaman from Shelby Junior High School, Post and Auxiliary 4659 Shelby Township. Anand Seetharaman also won $500 as one of eight state-level winners.

Other post-level first-place Patriot�s Pen winners from Macomb County who wrote on �The America I Believe In� are: Marissa C. Ewald, Post 1146 St. Clair Shores; Addison J. Simpson, Post 1794 Mount Clemens; Elena E. Nikolovski, Post 2052 Romeo; Veronica Projak and Olivia M. Wittstovk, Post 6691 Fraser; Samah A. Khan, Post 6756 Center Line; Nicholas J. Novak, Post 6802 Richmond; Ashley Marguerete Matthews and Brody M. McIntosh, Post 7573 New Baltimore.

The VFW has conducted the Voice of Democracy contest since 1947. Each year, nearly 40,000 high school students from across the country enter to win their share of $2.1 million in educational scholarships and incentives awarded through the program.

The national Voice of Democracy first-place winner receives a $30,000 scholarship paid directly to the recipient�s American university, college, vocational or technical school. Other national scholarships range from $1,000 to $16,000, and the first-place winner from each state�s VFW Department wins a minimum scholarship of $1,000 and an all-expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C.

Each year, more than 132,000 students in grades 6-8 enter the VFW�s Patriot�s Pen youth essay contest. The national first-place winner wins $5,000 and an all-expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C. The first-place winner from each state competes for national awards totaling $54,500, with each first-place state winner receiving a minimum of $500.

Students examine America�s history and their own experiences in modern American society in a 300 to 400-word essay, expressing their views based on a patriotic theme chosen by the VFW Commander-in-Chief.

Patriot�s Pen is on the National Association of Secondary School Principals National Advisory List of Contests and Activities for 2016-17.

DAR recognizes students as good citizens

The Alexander Macomb Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution recognized high school seniors who were nominees for its High School Good Citizens Award and Scholarship Contest this week.

Students were nominated by their schools. They submitted essays, the top two of which were selected by a panel of three non-DAR judges to receive cash prizes. The local chapter level first-place winner goes on to compete at the state level for more prize money. State winners go on for national prizes.

Students recognized at the chapter level were: Julia Knepper of Romeo High School, Madison Hubbard of Armada High School, Margaret DeCeuninck of L�Anse Creuse High School, Deborah Beyerlein of Lutheran High School North, and Crystal Bryant of Mount Clemens High School.

The students are pursuing careers after high school in law, physician�s assistance, sports management, and elementary education at Grand Valley, Central Michigan, University of Tennessee, Alma, and Grove City College.

The DAR Good Citizens Award and Scholarship Contest, created in 1934, encourages and rewards good citizenship, dependability, service, leadership, and patriotism at home, in school and in the community. Students who demonstrate these qualities to an outstanding degree are selected by their teachers and peers.

The Community Good Citizen Award went to Deborah Larson, who serves on the board of directors for the Macomb County Historical Society and the Rochester Historical Society. Larson researches and writes histories for the Mt. Avon and Clinton Grove Cemetery Tours.

Students learn to govern at American Legion program

An all-you-can-eat breakfast is 8-11 a.m. Feb. 12 at American Legion Post 4, 401 N. Groesbeck Hwy., Mount Clemens. The cost is $10. For information, call 586-469-9271. It raises money for the American Legion Boys State program.

The American Legion Boys State program and The American Legion Auxiliary Girls State program teach young men and women in their junior year of high school the function of government, leadership, management and communication skills. It takes place June 18-24 at Grand Valley State University, Allendale Campus.

Students nominate candidates for partisan and non-partisan offices. Winners govern Boys State for four days as elected and appointed officials on education and university boards, city councils, county commissions, and the state legislature. They make ordinances and laws for their constituencies. Executive departments and other administrators see that laws and policies are properly interpreted.

Activities include legislative sessions, court proceedings, law enforcement presentations, assemblies, bands, chorus and recreational programs.

For more information about Boys State, contact Jerry Kelley at 734-434-8272 or jkelley2136@sbcglobal.net.

American Legion buys defibrillators

The VALOR League plays host to its seventh annual �Linda Fernandez Go Red for Women (and Men) Dinner.�

The dinner was started by Linda Fernandez, a VALOR league member, because she had heart disease. She died in 2012. The VALOR League vowed to carry on her fight to make sure that people are aware of heart disease that takes the life of someone every 34 seconds. The dinner is 5-7 p.m. Feb. 11 at VFW Post 3901 at 1005 Pte. Tremble Road, Algonac.

Proceeds will be used toward the goal of donating an automatic external defibrillator to every veterans post in St. Clair County. This year�s goal is $1,600, and VFW Post 8594 in Yale is the recipient.

The menu includes baked chicken, meatballs, mostaccioli, mashed potatoes, corn, salad, coleslaw, rolls, dessert and beverages.

Health care workers will be on site to take blood pressure readings. Those who get their blood pressure taken are entered into a door prize basket drawing. For more information, call Jim Fernandez at 810-459-8315, or call 810-794-3033.

Send service club and veterans news to: Linda May at lindamay@ameritech.net. Or mail c/o The Macomb Daily, 19176 Hall Road, Clinton Township MI 48038. Phone 586-791-8116.

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