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Objectives Of Essay Writing Competition

Eight Steps Towards a Better Scholarship Essay

Writing a scholarship essay can be very difficult – especially if you want to do it well. Your essay will need to wow the reader, and speak directly to the goals of that organization, as well as the objectives of that award. If done properly, you will very rarely be able to submit the same application to multiple awards – it is not a one-size-fits-all; most essays will need to be tweaked or completely altered to show the reader that you are deserving of the award above and beyond any of the other participant who also applied.

Read on to find eight steps to help you write a better scholarship essay so that you can get the money you need to fund your international education.

Step 1: Read the Essay Prompt Thoroughly

Many schools and other organizations that give out scholarships will give you a "prompt" or a question which the essay is supposed to address. Read the question or prompt carefully and try to "read between the lines." For example, the prompt you are to answer might be, "Describe a book that made a lasting impression on you and your life and why?" Ask yourself, "Are they really interested in my literary preferences or is there something more to this question?" More than likely, they want to get a better idea of who you are—not only what types of books you like but also what motivates you and what sorts of stories or topics interest you. They may also be interested in getting a sense for how promising a student you are based on the type of book you choose and what you have to say about it.

Tip: Always keep in mind that any scholarship essay question, no matter the topic, should demonstrate your interests, your background, and most importantly, highlight the experiences you've had that fit with the goals and mission of the funding organization.

Instead of being given a prompt, you might be asked to write an essay on the topic of your choosing. Although challenging, this is also an opportunity to demonstrate your creativity. Finally, if anything about the directions aren't clear, don't be afraid to contact someone at the funding organization and ask for clarification.

Step 2: Make a List of Important Points and Keywords to Include

Looking for sample essays?
Check out our Sample Essay section where you can see scholarship essays, admissions essays, and more!

Regardless of the essay prompt, you will want to make sure to include the important and relevant information about your experiences and background that makes you an ideal candidate for the scholarship award. To complete this step, it can be helpful to first research the organization to which you're applying and try to find their mission statement on their website. Circle a few key words from the mission statement and make sure to include those buzzwords in your essay.

Scholarship committees are not only looking for good students, they are often looking for a person that fits their organizational goals. You should gather your other application materials such as transcripts and resumes so you can review your qualifications as well as make note of what is missing in these materials that needs to be included in the essay.

For example, if you're applying for a general academic scholarship, you might want to talk about a specific class you took that really piqued your interest or inspired your current academic and career goals. The committee will see the list of the classes that you took on your transcript but they won't know how a particular class inspired you unless you tell them. The essay is the best place to do this. Your list of important points to make might also include:

  • Any academic awards or other honors you've won.
  • Any AP or college-level courses you took in high school.
  • Any outside courses, internships, or other academic experiences that won't necessarily appear on your transcript.
  • Why your experience and the mission of the funding organization match.
  • What you plan to major in during college and how you think that major will be useful to your future career goals.
  • Any special training or knowledge you have, or a project you completed in school or as an extracurricular activity.
  • An example of how you overcame a challenge.
  • Your financial circumstances that makes it necessary for you to finance your studies through scholarship money.

The challenge now is to integrate those points that you want the committee to know with an essay that answers the prompt. You can see our example scholarship essays to get a better idea of how to do this.

Step 3: Write an Outline or a Rough Draft

Not everyone likes to make an outline before they begin writing, but in this case it can be very helpful. You can start with your list of important points to begin writing the outline. For many, telling a story is the easiest and most effective way to write a scholarship essay. You can tell the story of how you found your favorite book, and how it has changed and inspired you. Start with large headings in your outline that describes the basic storyline. For example:

  1. High school composition teacher recommended book
  2. Read it over one weekend
  3. Made me see the world around me differently
  4. Inspired me to pursue a career in social justice

Now you can start filling in the subheadings with points from your previous list:

  1. High school composition teacher recommended book
    1. Favorite class in high school
    2. Class opened my eyes to new ways of thinking
    3. Teacher noticed my enthusiasm—recommended outside reading
  2. Read it over one weekend
    1. Was the first time I was so drawn in by a book, I read it very quickly
    2. I realized my academic potential beyond getting good grades
  3. Made me see the world around me differently
    1. Started to look for jobs in social justice
    2. Interned for a summer at a law firm doing pro bono work for the poor
    3. This was a big challenge because I realized you can't help everyone and resources are limited
    4. Overcame this challenge by knowing that small change can be big, and working hard in a field you are passionate about will inspire you everyday
  4. Inspired me to pursue a career in social justice
    1. The book is a constant source of inspiration and will keep me motivated as I pursue my career
    2. The book will always remind me how people with limited financial resources can still make a huge difference in others' lives

Step 4: Write a Strong Statement that Summarizes Your Points

You will want to include one strong thesis statement that summarizes all the major points you will make in your essay. It is often easy to start writing with this simple statement. Your essay doesn't have to begin or end with the thesis statement, but it should appear somewhere in order to tie all the individual sections together.

For example, your thesis statement might be, "You will find that various experiences from both my academic career and my personal life align very well with your organization's mission: shaping community leaders who are working towards a more just and sustainable world." Starting with this sentence can help you organize your thoughts and main points, and provide you with a direction for your essay. When you've finished your essay, be sure to reflect back on your thesis statement and ask yourself, "Does this essay further explain and support my thesis statement?"

Step 5: Fill in the Missing Parts

Now that you have a thesis statement, an outline, and a list of important points to include, you can begin to fill in the missing parts of your story. The first sentence is particularly important: it should capture the attention of the reader, and motivate him or her to continue reading. We recommend starting your story by painting a vivid picture of an experience about which you will be talking in the essay.

For example: "It is 6 am on a hot day in July, I've already showered and I'm eating breakfast. My classmates are all sleeping in and the sun has yet to awaken, but I'm ready to seize the day, as I couldn't imagine spending my summer any other way but interning at a local law firm that specializes in representing the poor. I work a typical 8-5 day during my summer vacation and nothing has made me happier. But I wouldn't be here if it weren't for one particularly savvy teacher and a little book she gave me to read outside of class."

Step 6: Rewrite, Revise, Rewrite

A good writer rewrites and revises his or her work many, many times. After getting a first draft on paper, take a day or two away from the essay and then come back to it with fresh eyes. Make appropriate edits for content, and pay attention to proper spelling and grammar. If need be, you might want to write an entirely new draft and then integrate the best of both into a final draft. Writing a new draft can inspire you to think of new ideas or a better way to tell your story. Some other tips to think about as you rewrite and revise:

  • Make sure it sounds like your voice. You want the scholarship committee to feel like they are getting to know you. If you don't sound authentic, the committee will know. It is better to be yourself than to say what you think the committee wants to hear.
  • Strike a balance between modesty and arrogance. You should be proud of your accomplishments, but you don't want to sound arrogant. Don't exaggerate a story; instead be clear about what you did and the impact it had and let that speak for itself.
  • Check to make sure you are answering the prompt and fulfilling all other requirements of the essay as directed by the committee, such as font preference and word count limits.
  • Don't just list your accomplishments; describe them in detail and also tell the reader how you felt during these experiences.
  • A scholarship essay is not a dissertation. You don't need to impress the committee with big words, especially if you're not completely clear if you're using them correctly. Simplicity and clarity should be the goals.
  • Make sure your essay will be read from the beginning to the end. Committee members won't dedicate much time to reading the essay, so you need to make sure they are given motivation to read the entire thing. If you are telling a story, don't reveal the end of the story until the end.
  • Check to make sure the buzzwords from the mission statement appear. It is easy to forget the scholarship committee's goals as you write. Return to their mission statement and look for spots to place keywords from the statement. Be sure, however, that you're not copying the mission statement word-for-word.

Step 7: Have someone else read your essay

Ideally, you could give your essay to a teacher or college admissions counselor who is familiar with scholarship essays and the college admission process. If such a person is not available, virtually anyone with good reading and writing skills can help make your essay better. When your editor is done reading and you've looked over his or her notes, be sure to ask the following questions:

  • Was the story interesting and did it hold your attention?
  • Were there any parts that were confusing?
  • Did you find any spelling or grammar errors?
  • Does the essay sound like my voice?
  • Does the essay respond appropriately to the prompt?
  • Is there anything you would have done differently or something you thought was missing?

After having an editor (or two or three) look over your draft, it is time again to revise and rewrite.

Step 8: Refine the Final Draft

Once you feel satisfied with the draft, review it one more time and pay particular attention to structure, spelling, grammar, and whether you fulfilled all the required points dictated by the committee. If you are over the required word count, you will need to make edits so that you are within the limit. If you are significantly under the word count, consider adding a supporting paragraph.

Essay Writing Center

Related Content:

Misconception: No one actually reads your scholarship essay! – Wrong!

Fact: Your essay is the key to your scholarship application. It is an opportunity to demonstrate to the selection committee that you are a well-rounded individual, that you are more than your GPA, that you are a strong writer, and it gives you a chance to talk about your experiences and qualifications in greater detail than what appears on your resume or transcripts.

Ten famous Essay Writing Competitions are mentioned in this article; every competition has a different pattern with various prizes. The essay writing competitions are organised for developing knowledge and motivating the masses on a particular topic. The essay competition 2018 is also crucial for the young generation to explore their thoughts & imagination and develop their understanding of a particular topic. Through these essay competitions, students will enhance their thinking ability and problem-solving skills, which is important for our Nation. There is proven track record that lots of solutions for Nation related problems are provided through these competitions. Scroll down for the list of Essay writing competition 2018.

Essay Writing Competitions List

The list contains the essay writing competition which is generally organised by some department of Govt. of India or some reputed organisations and is organised on ever year basis.


Babu Jagjivan Ram All India Essay Competition

The Babu Jagjivan Ram All India Essay Competition is organised by “The Babu Jagjivan Ram National Foundation”. This foundation is established by the Government of India as an autonomous organisation under the Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment. The main objective of this organisation is to promote the scheduled castes and weaker unit of society. Every year this foundation organised All India level essay competition. 

Candidates can choose their medium of languages either English or Hindi for essay writing. This competition organised into two types of categories of candidates. Both categories have their different Topic, Prize, and Word Limit. The word limit for candidates of Recognised Schools (Secondary & Senior Secondary School i.e. from class 9 to class 12) is 2000 words and for candidates of Recognised Colleges/Universities/Institutions is 3500 words. Here is the prize description of The Babu Jagjivan Ram All India Essay Competition (based on last year) below:

Category 1: 1st PrizeRs. 25,000Rs. 25,000 
2nd PrizeRs. 15,000Rs. 15,000 
3rd PrizeRs. 10,000Rs. 10,000 
Category 2: 1st PrizeRs. 1,00,000Rs. 1,00,000 
2nd PrizeRs. 50,000Rs. 50,000 
3rd PrizeRs. 25,000 Rs. 25,000


Dr Ambedkar National Essay Competition 

Dr Ambedkar Foundation organises Dr Ambedkar National Essay Competition. The primary objective of this foundation is to implement the programs and activities for spreading the ideology and message of Babasaheb Dr B. R. Ambedkar to the masses across the globe. Whole life Dr Ambedkar worked for weaker section of society on various issues such as social justice, removal of inequality and discrimination, ameliorating the conditions of weaker sections of the society, removal of untouchability, caste-based prejudices, disparities, equality of opportunity, social democracy, etc.

This essay competition organised for students of recognised Schools/ Colleges/ Universities. Candidates can choose their medium of languages either English or Hindi for essay writing. Every year, topics of essay shall be selected on thoughts of Dr Ambedkar. The word limit for candidates of Recognised Schools (Secondary & Senior Secondary School i.e. from class 9 to class 12) is 2000 words and for candidates of Recognised Colleges/Universities/Institutions is 3500 words. Here is the prize description of Dr Ambedkar National Essay Competition below:

Category 1: 1st Prize Rs. 25,000Rs. 25,000 
2nd Prize Rs. 15,000Rs. 15,000 
3rd Prize Rs. 10,000Rs. 10,000 
Category 2: 1st Prize Rs. 1,00,000Rs. 1,00,000 
 2nd Prize Rs. 50,000Rs. 50,000 
 3rd Prize Rs. 25,000Rs. 25,000


Sir Syed All India Essay Competition

Aligarh Muslim University organises Sir Syed All India Essay Competition for the student of recognised Colleges/ Universities. The primary objective of this essay competition is to spread modern scientific education among students. This essay writing competition organised every year only in the English language. Candidates are informed that there is no entrance fee for this essay writing competition.

Only students from recognised Colleges/ Universities can participate in this contest. The topics of this essay competition are inspired by the thoughts of “Sir Syed Ali”. The candidate has to write the essay in the English language within preset word limit of 3000. Here is the prize description of Sir Syed All India Essay Competition below:

Prizes: The winners will be given the following prizes:


1st Prize

2nd Prize

3rd Prize

4th Prize


Rs. 25000

Rs. 15000

Rs. 10000

Rs. 5000


All India Essay Contest on Nuclear Science & Technology

All India Essay Contest on Nuclear Science & Technology is organised by The Department of Atomic Energy (DAE). Students who are pursuing graduation in any discipline in India can participate in this essay writing competition. The topics of this essay contest are based on the Nuclear Science & Technology. Candidates who have earlier participated and won any prize in the essay contest are not eligible for this competition. Candidates can write the essay in English language or any official Indian language within preset word limit of 2000.

Prizes: The winners will be given the following prizes:


1st Prize

2nd Prize

3rd Prize

Consolation Prize


Rs. 21000

Rs. 14000

Rs. 7000

Rs. 3000 


UNESCO Essay Writing Competition

UNESCO Essay Writing Competition is organised by the GOI Peace Foundation. It is an international essay writing competition for the young generation. The main objective of this essay contest is to bring people in wisdom and united their hearts toward the common goal of peace on Earth. This foundation also works for building cooperation among individuals and organisations in all fields, including education, science, culture and the arts. GOI Peace Foundation is also focused on inspiring society to learn from the young minds and to think about how we can make a difference in the world. Candidates up to 25 years old can participate in this essay competition.

The length of the essay must be 700 words or less in English, French, Spanish or German languages or 1600 characters or less in Japanese, excluding essay title. Here is the description of UNESCO Essay Writing Competition below:

Prizes: The winners will be given the following prizes:

  • 1st Prize: Certificate and prize of 100,000 Yen (approx. US$880 as of February 2018) (1 entrants)
  • 2nd Prize: Certificate and prize of 50,000 Yen (approx. US$440 as of February 2018) (2 entrants)
  • 3rd Prize: Certificate and gift (5 entrants)
  • Honourable Mention: Certificate and gift (25 participants)

PCRA Essay Writing Competition

Petroleum Conservation Research Association (PCRA) Essay Writing Competition is organised only for those students who are learning in schools in India recognised by Central & State Boards of India. This competition conducts in various languages such as Hindi, English, Konkani, Bengali, Gujarati, Kannada, Kashmiri, Marathi, Assamese, Malayalam, Manipuri, Oriya, Sanskrit, Sindhi, Tamil, Telugu, Urdu, Maithili, Punjabi, Dogri, Nepali, Bodo and Santhali. It must be that minimum 15 students have to participate in each language in which the school submits its entry.

Only students of classes 8 to 10 are eligible to participate in this contest. The student will be given one hour to write an essay; it is to be noted that the essay should not exceed 700 words. Students are informed that they have to submit the essay in their handwriting. The shortlisted essays send by the school and then will be examined by the jury appointed by Petroleum Conservation Research Association.

On The Spot Essay Writing Competition (MoSPI)

On the Spot Essay Writing Competition is organised by The Ministry of Statistics & Programme Implementation (MoSPI). This year on the spot essay writing competition is held for Post-Graduate Students of Statistics. MoSPI will organise an essay writing competition on subjects relevant to Statistics as part of the celebration of Statistics Day.

The participant will get two topics for the essay on the spot. The essay should be written on one of the topics in about 5000 words in the prescribed preset word limit of 3000.

On the basis of originality of ideas, Sequence of presentation and writing skills, the essay will be examined by a committee constituted by MoSPI. Winners’ names will be displayed on the official website of MoSPI.

Prizes: The winners will be given the following prizes:


One 1st Prize

Two 2nd Prize

Three 3rd Prize

Five Consolation Prize


Rs. 15000

Rs. 12000

Rs. 10000

Rs 5000


UNIC All India Essay Writing Competition

UNIC All India Essay Writing Competition is organised by United Nations Information Centre for India and Bhutan association with Shri Ram Chandra Mission a non-profit, educational and spiritual service organisation. This essay writing competition is organised each year in several educational institutions across the country on the celebration of International Day of Youth i.e. August 12 every year.

UNIC All India Essay Writing Competition has two categories of participation and students have the option to choose their language of writing such as English, Hindi or one of the 9 approved regional languages of India- Bengali, Marathi, Telugu, Tamil, Oriya, Malayalam, Kannada, and Gujarati. The length of the essay should be 1000 words for each category.

The winners of both National and Zone level will be awarded medals as well as all certificates signed by the Director of the UNIC and the President of SRCM.

Tata Building India Online Essay Competition

The Tata Building India Online School Essay Competition is organised by the Tata group of Companies. The main objective of this essay competition is to motivate the young generation of India towards thinking about nation building. The students can participate in this essay contest only once in an academic year. The essay should be written by the student only once, and it will be evaluated at three levels such as School, City and National level.

The candidates, who are willing to participate in Tata Building India Essay Competition, informed that there is no entry fee for this contest. This essay contest would be organised across 180 cities, 7000+ schools and will cover approximately 3.5 million students and scheduled to be held in 12 languages. The winning candidates of school, city and national level will be awarded Certificates and Fabulous prizes.

The students of Junior Level Class 6 to 8 and Senior Level Class 9 to 12 are eligible for this essay writing competition. The student will be given 90 minutes to write an essay; it is to be noted that the essay should not exceed 1000 words.

Living Rainforest Essay Competition

The Living Rainforest Essay Competition is organised and run by the Trust for Sustainable Living. The mission of the trust is to provide high-quality education and enhance the knowledge of school students about the living rainforest which is home to 700 species of plants and animals. The topics of this essay contest will be based on the Climate.

There are two types of student category with their different word limit are mentioned below:


Primary students (Ages 7-11)

Secondary Students (Ages 11-17)

Maximum Words

400 words

600 words

Those students who will win the prize (1st Prize -5th Prize) awarded trophies at the TSL International Schools Debate, and their essays will be published on the competition website. The International Schools Debate & Prize giving will take place at the Oxford Union, Oxford, UK.

All Paid Trip to the UK:  The Grand Prize winners along with the parent, plus one Teacher Champion will be awarded a free trip to the UK.

List of Other Essay Writing Competitions

If you have any query related to Essay Writing Competitions, you can write to us in the comments section below.

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