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National Student Essay Competition winners announced

The Competition received more than 200 essays on the importance of a free press.

Students in grades six through university across the United States recently participated in a National Student Essay Competition inspired by The Boston Globe’s #FreePress editorial response campaign in 2018 to President Trump’s assault on the news media.

The project was funded by the McCarthey Family Foundation, endorsed and supported by The Boston Globe, the Boston Globe Foundation, Westminster College of Salt Lake City, the Committee to Protect Journalists, the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, and the News Leaders Association.

A distinguished Honorary Advisory Committee played a key role in launching the Competition and a notable Jury selected the winners in each of three categories. Participating newspapers took precious time to publicize the Competition and encourage readers to submit essays while reporting on the growing pandemic.


The Competition received more than 200 essays on the importance of a free press. The three national winners, who will each receive $5,000 from the Boston Globe Foundation, have been chosen. One of the winners also received a full, four-year scholarship to Westminster College.

The mission of the project was to engage students in dialogue with teachers, parents, and friends about freedom of the press and to make their voices defending the First Amendment heard across the country. Project organizers and supporters believe that it is essential for adults to hear the concerns of our children, who are equally distressed about the current threats to our democracy.

Read the winning essays:

Alexandra Sullivan: Journalism is truth-telling

Annelise Best: The press gives power to the people

Eric Lu: Preserving the First Amendment is non-negotiable to our democracy

More information at https://mklpr.com/national-student-essay-competition