Free Speech Essay Contest 2018

The Hope and Stanley Adelstein Free Speech Essay Contest is almost here!

All NEO high school students are invited to submit an essay that discusses the role of free speech in the 21st century. Submissions are encouraged to use personal experience, current events, history, politics, art, and other supporting sources, as well as engage in opposing viewpoints to create a strong argument. Essays will be judged on their clarity, content, originality, and significance.

Essay submission will go live on January 22, 2018 and are due March 12, 2018. We will select three winners from 11/12 grade and three winners from 9/10 grade, with scholarship prizes up to $1,000. Winners are also invited to read their essays at a City Club forum.

In the meantime, we encourage you to explore the resources below or begin your own research to become familiar with the prompt. Good luck!

Free Speech Essay Contest Prompt 2018:

"In the past year, college campuses from Berkeley to Middlebury have seen widespread student protests against speakers brought to their respective campuses. While many contend that students are exercising their right to protest, others argue that student protests have reached the point where they now drown out the voices they disagree with. This debate is not limited to educational settings; here at the City Club, we saw community members speaking both in favor and in opposition of Corey Lewandowski speaking from our stage. With these opposing perspectives in mind, how should institutions determine to whom they provide a public platform?"



For any questions or if you are interested in becoming a judge, please contact Julia Wang at


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