Patriot’s Pen Rules and Eligibility

What is the Patriot's Pen?

Conducted nationwide, this VFW-sponsored youth essay competition gives students an opportunity to write essays expressing their views on an annual patriotic theme. We invite you to join the more than 120,000 students who participated last year in this contest. The national winners will receive at least $500. The first-place national award is currently $5,000 plus an all-expense paid trip to Washington, D.C., for the winner and a parent or guardian.

The National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP) has again approved this contest for its National Advisory List of Contests and Activities.

Who Can Enter?

The Patriot's Pen program is open to students in grades 6-8 (on the October 31 deadline), who are enrolled in a public, private or parochial school or home study program in the United States and its territories.

How to Enter?

Download and complete the Patriot's Pen entry form and brochure. Essays must be no less than 300 words and cannot exceed 400 words. They should be submitted to the VFW Post, along with the completed Patriot's Pen entry form no later than the October 31 deadline.Students can ask a teacher or youth group leader to supervise their progress in the competition.

Download and complete the Patriot's Pen entry form and brochure.

View and Download Entry Form

View and Download Rules