VFW patriotism scholarship contest entries due Oct. 31

September 18, 2023

Dedicated to promoting patriotism and investing in the future generation, the Veterans of Foreign Wars is sponsoring its annual Voice of Democracy audio-essay program for high school students and its Patriot’s Pen youth essay contest for middle school students. 

Established in 1947, the Voice of Democracy audio-essay program provides students, in grades 9-12 who are enrolled in a public, private or parochial school or home study program, with the unique opportunity to express themselves in a democratic- and patriotic-themed recorded essay. 

Members of VFW Post 7234, along with Post 7234 Auxiliary, based in Ocean View, select three winners, with the first-place winner advancing to the state level. Local winners receive prize amounts of $650, $375 and $250, respectively. Advancing to the VFW Department (state) competition, the winner is awarded at a scholarship of at least $1,000.

The national first place winner receives a $35,000 scholarship paid directly to the recipient’s American university, college or vocational/technical school. The 2023-24 audio-essay theme is "What Are the Greatest Attributes of Our Democracy?"

Students in grades 6-8, enrolled in public, private or parochial school or home study program, enter the VFW’s Patriot’s Pen youth essay contest for a chance to win their share of state and national awards. VFW Post 7234 awards $650, $375 or $250 to first-, second- and third-place winners, respectively. Each first place state winner receives a minimum of $500, and the national first place winner wins $5,000.

The essay contest encourages young minds to examine America’s history, along with their own experiences in modern American society, by drafting a 300- to 400-word essay, expressing their views based on a patriotic theme. The 2023-24 essay theme is "How Are You Inspired by America?"

VFW 7234 serves the lower Sussex County area. The contest is open to all local students, and children/grandchildren of post members.

For more information, rules and eligibility requirements email, call 302-539-9981 or go to

Entries must be submitted by midnight, Tuesday, Oct. 31. Completed entries may be delivered or mailed to VFW Post 7234, Attn: Patriot’s Pen/Voice of Democracy, 29265 Marshy Hope Way, Ocean View, DE 19970.

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