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 $55,000, with each first-place state winner receiving a minimum of $500 at the national level. 

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 chosen by the VFW Commander-in-Chief. Want to apply? Read the rules and eligibility requirements and download the entry form and brochure before submitting your entry to your local VFW Post. 


For submissions to VFW Post 12043 contact
Keith McGlaughlin at 520-233-2400 (option 1) or

Patriots Pen Application

2022-2023 theme is: "My Pledge to Our Veterans"?

 Event is over for 2022-2023 on October 31, 2022,
Thank you to all who participated.