Established in 1947, our Voice of Democracy Scholarship provides high school students with the unique opportunity to express themselves in regards to a democratic and patriotic-themed recorded essay. Each year, nearly 64,500 9-12 grade students from across the country enter to win their share of more than $2.1 million in educational scholarships and incentives awarded through the program.
Application Requirements and Eligibility for the Voice of Democracy Scholarship
Students must submit a three to five-minute audio essay on a contest theme (changes each year). Open to high school students (9th to 12th grade).
The Voice of Democracy Program is open to students in grades 9-12 enrolled by the Oct. 31 deadline in public, private, parochial school, or home study programs in the U.S., its territories, or its possessions. Dependents of U.S. military or civilian personnel in overseas schools are also eligible to participate. Award available for all levels of post-secondary study in an American institution. Open to permanent U.S. residents only. Competition starts at the local level. No entries are to be submitted to the National Headquarters.
The national first-place winner receives a $30,000 scholarship paid directly to the recipient’s American university, college or vocational/technical school. A complete list of other national scholarships range from $1,000-$16,000, and the first place winner from each VFW Department (state) wins a minimum scholarship of $1,000.
- Must currently be in high school
- Type of institution award is open to: two-year college
- Type of institution award is open to: four-year college
- Type of institution award is open to: trade/technical school
- Award is available to U.S. citizens
- Award is available to Canadian citizens
- Award is available to citizens of countries other than the U.S. and Canada.
- Application form required
- Essay required
- Special requirements exist (These are specified in text.)
- Entry in a contest required
- Audio recording of the applicant's essay.
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Donor: Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States
The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States is a nonprofit veterans service organization comprised of eligible veterans and military service members from the active, guard and reserve forces.Website