The VFW is dedicated to promoting patriotism and investing in our future generation. If you are a democracy-loving high school student interested in a $35,000 college scholarship or a patriotic middle school student interested in winning $5,000, these scholarships may be for you.
Voice of Democracy – Local high school students have the opportunity to compete for thousands of dollars
in scholarships and a trip to Washington, D.C. Students must write and record a three-to-five-minute essay
on a selected theme. Post winners compete at the District level with the winner advancing to the state
competition. All state first-place winners receive a four-day trip to Washington, D.C., and the chance to
compete for their share of more than $150,000 in scholarships. The first-place winner receives a $30,000
Patriot’s Pen – Middle school students in grades 6-8 in this area have the opportunity to compete and win
thousands of dollars in national awards. The VFW enacted the Patriot’s Pen competition in 1995 to
encourage young minds to examine America’s history, along with their own experiences in modern
American society by composing a 300- to 400-word patriotic-themed essay. Post winners advance to District
competition with District winners advancing to the state competition. State first-place winners compete for
their share of thousands of dollars in awards, and the national first-place winner is awarded $5,000 and an
all-expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C.
Without our nation’s veterans, America wouldn't be the great nation it is today. Our youth deserve to learn about our rich history, traditions and the role of our veterans in creating and shaping America.
Smart/Maher Teacher Award – Every year, the VFW recognizes exceptional teachers for their outstanding
commitment to teaching Americanism and patriotism to their students. The winning teachers from each (state)
Department receive a national citation for themselves, and one for their school. Current certified/licensed
teachers of grades K-12 can be nominated by fellow teachers, students, family members, other interested
individuals or nominate themselves. Teachers who promote civic responsibility, flag etiquette and patriotism,
and strive to help students develop a better understanding of democratic values and beliefs are prime candidates
for the award.
For more information about the Voice of Democracy or Patriot’s Pen competitions,
contact the program
chairman, Jim Hasko at VFW Post 1079 by phone at 440-322-6980.
If you have any questions about the Smart/Maher Teacher Award contest,
contact the program chairman, Marco Cuevas at VFW Post 1079 by phone at 440-365-8500.