Request for Opinions 2019

The Stevenson Center invites high school students to write original short opinion pieces (1,000 words or less) or multi-media presentations (of no more than 3 minutes and/or 100 megabytes in upload size) on topics that affect public policy.  It is hoped that students will choose topics of deep concern to them.  The range can be broad. Examples include, but are not limited to: climate change, campaign finance reform, immigration, civil rights, impact of poverty and violence on health, foreign policy or other contemporary subjects.  Controversial subjects are acceptable, though the tone and language should remain respectful.

Please submit essays by March 15, 2019 on our website: 
Blind copies of each essay will be read by a committee of three Stevenson Center advisors.

$250.00 will be awarded to the three winning essays and all three will be published on our website. The authors worthy of second tier commendation will not be published on the website or receive monetary awards but will receive letters of thanks for their participation.

Essays should be both analytical and original.  Judging will be determined by clarity and relevance of the thesis, development of the argument with precise, persuasive and well-organized evidence, creativity, impact, and summation of the message.

Guidelines for submission:

Terms and Conditions

All submissions become the sole property of the Stevenson Center on Democracy and will not be returned. The Adlai Stevenson Center on Democracy reserves the right to edit, exhibit, publish and reprint submissions on the Adlai Stevenson Center's public website. Contest winners will be notified by April 15, 2019.


Any personal data, collected during the course of the contest will only be used and disclosed for purposes reasonably connected with administering this competition, including certain internal and external communications related to the essay contest.  We may also share personal data, such as name, age, school of the overall winners with the press for publicity reasons. We will not disclose home addresses, phone and e-mail addresses beyond the needs of reaching the students to inform them of the finalists.

For the finalists under the age of 18, parental permission shall be required for photos, press interviews and other publicity. 2019 Stevenson Center Student Upload

Click Here to Submit your Piece

The Adlai Stevenson Center on Democracy is a non-profit, non-partisan organization created to address challenges to democratic systems of government and conceive of practical solutions for these challenges.  Through lively presentations and discussions of major issues in the country and the world, the Stevenson Center aims to engage young people in the dialogue, so they can be participants in the outcomes.