By: Hannah Dineen
A new year brings new opportunities, specifically those in the arts for highschoolers. I have compiled a list of writing and art competitions for high school students who wish to submit their work in hopes of winning. These competitions provide a great goal for young artists, some even offering prompts to help ideas start forming. If you like art, writing, or are even just the least bit curious I encourage you to read up on some of these great opportunities.
The Davidson Institute is a unique fellowship opportunity that looks for students with projects close to a college or graduate level in a specific area of study (ranging from mathematics to literature). The work is critiqued by experts in the field on its innovation, creativity, excellence, and potential benefit to society. Scholarships from $10,000-$50,000 are offered to winners and are decided after submissions are turned in during early February. The Davidson Institute is highly competitive, but one of the broadest competitions in terms of submission topics.
The Manningham Trust competition is geared to poets in 6-12th grade all over the US who have not had their work printed or won awards for the poems they plan to submit in other magazines. The contest is split into two age divisions: Junior (Grades 6-8) and Senior (Grades 9-12). Students can submit original poetry up to 35 lines in an attempt to win cash prizes and publication in the Manningham Trust Poetry Student Award Anthology. The competition is open until March 1st, 2020.
Apprentice Writer is run by the Writers Institue at Susquehanna University in Pennsylvania. The contest offers submission opportunities for poetry, spoken word poetry, prose, short story, memoir, personal essay, graphic fiction, and nonfiction submissions. There are no topic restrictions, and the contest runs until March 15th, 2020. Writers with work accepted with be notified on May 15th, and published in the school’s literary publication.
The Torrance Creativity Award is a competition named after E. Paul Torrance, who stated: “creativity is the highest form of mental functioning.” The competition draws from a global high school submission pool in areas of creative writing, visual arts, music composition, and inventions. Themes for 2019 are described as: “Finding solutions, a change of heart, transcending limits, true worth, building anew, what a surprise, finding your path, and amazing animals.” The competition accepts submissions up until June 30th.
One Teen Story publishes a total of 4 stories a year from highschool writers. Contest winners receive a $500 prize, and a copy of the publication their work is put into. The competition accepts previously unpublished short stories about teen experiences from 2,000 to 4,500 words with teens as the main characters. The contest highlights stories about identity, friendship, family, and coming of age (with avoidance of profanity, sex, and drugs).
Polyphony Lit describes itself as “a global online literary platform for high school writers and editors,” and it offers opportunities to high school students who like creative writing ranging from competition opportunities to editing titles. Polyphony follows rolling submissions, and focuses on poetry, fiction, and creative non-fiction submissions, but is unique in the way it offers feedback to submitting writers. Accepted pieces are also put up for the Claudia Ann Seaman Young Writers Award, which receives a cash prize and is judged by a distinguished panel of professional published authors.