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The ACPL Hosts Annual Civic Initiative Essay Contest

SEU’s American Center for Political Leadership (ACPL) is hosting its third annual essay contest centered around civil discourse and civic engagement. High school students can win up to $1,500 in scholarship prize money with a winning essay for the ACPL’s Civic Initiative Essay Contest.

Open to high school students who reside in Polk County, the essay contest revolves around promoting civil discourse, civic engagement and civic renewal. Students may enter one essay by March 31, 2023, that answers the prompt, “Why is civic engagement and the need for civil discourse important in our current political climate?”

Ten finalists will be selected to advance to the second round of judging, where the top ten essays will be reviewed by a panel of five judges, in order to narrow it down to the top three. On April 28, 2023, three winners will be announced. The scholarship award for first place is $1,500, second place is $1,000 and third place is $500.

The contest will be judged by college professors and community leaders.

For more information and a full list of rules, visit the ACPL website,, or call 863-667-5051.

About the ACPL

The American Center for Political Leadership is a bipartisan think tank that was founded at SEU to raise up a new generation of political leaders who understand that the only way to create real lasting change is by engaging when others pull back, by acting with civility when others work through disrespect, and by defending the individual freedoms that form the bedrock of our society. The ACPL stands on three pillars: cultivating civic engagement, advancing political civility and defending individual freedoms, with the goal of reclaiming the traditional American ideal that we can make this nation great by working together, no matter what our differences may be, and giving the next generation the tools they need to make this dream a reality.

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The American Center for Political Leadership
Essay Contest Details
Past Contest Winners
Political Science at SEU
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