National High School Essay Contest


The Columbia Political Review's inaugural national essay contest closed on May 10, 2017. Read the winning essays here. We will host a second contest next year.


The COlumbia Political Review is hosting its first-ever National essay contest for high school students.

Like many schools, Columbia University has a history of protests, from the famous student interventions in the '60s to more recent actions concerning the Trump administration. These protests vary in their topic, size, and salience, but in all cases one premise persists: the knowledge that students should have a role in politics.

For the Columbia Political Review's inaugural national essay contest, we invite you to respond, in 300–500 words, to the question, "What is a student's role in politics?" We are opening the contest to students attending high school (grades 9–12) in the United States, with the aim of having students think critically about their place in the American political system. The contest is open from April 1, 2017, through May 10, 2017. In late May, we will publish the three best essays on our website.


Please note that the Columbia Political Review is an undergraduate student group at Columbia University; it in no way represents the university.