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American Legion National High School Oratorical Contest


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Awards Available: 3

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  • Scholarship Description
  • The American Legion Oratorical Contest exists to develop deeper knowledge and appreciation for the U.S. Constitution among high school students. Since 1938, the program has presented participants with an academic speaking challenge for high school students under age 20. Competition begins at the post level and advances to a state competition. Legion department representatives certify one winner per state to the national contest, where department winners compete against each other in two speaking rounds. The contest caps off with a final round that decides the three top finishers.

    Young orators earn some of the most generous college scholarships available to high school students. Over $203,500 in scholarships can be awarded each year. The overall national contest winner gets a $25,000 scholarship. Second place takes home $22,500, and third gets $20,000. Each department (state) winner who is certified into and participates in the national contest’s first round receives a $2,000 scholarship. Those who advance past the first round receive an additional $2,000 scholarship. The American Legion’s National Organization awards the scholarships, which can be used at any college or university in the United States.
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Rosio C  on 1/13/2023 9:41:54 AM

Heyo! My name is Rosio Calderon, I am a high school junior and I attend Diamond Hill Jarvis in Texas. I come from a Mexican family, the youngest of three, so the pressure of going to collage this is very important to me and my family. I want to follow in the same footsteps as my brother and sister and go to college This is my first time trying to apply for a scholarship so I am incredibly excited and nervous. I want to major in animation and art, along with theater as a supplemental. These are things I love doing and I would love to continue doing them making something even bigger, making it more then just a hobby, i want to make it my job my future.

Cade. B  on 2/6/2021 1:16:33 AM

Hello, my name is Cade Bailor and I am a student athlete attending Troy high school right in good old southern California. The way I've been raised and taught is to never give up and always take chances. A motto I live bye is "Risk it for the biscuit," this is something me and my friend made many years ago. I haven't really put too much thought on where I want to go to college yet, but I know I want to major in public administration. Reason I would take this is because I want to become a firefighter, so a school I would go to will have a fire program. My original plan and dream I had was to be a police officer and join swat for a few years then go into the k-9 unit, but with recent events going on and a lot of thought i've decided to pursue into becoming a firefighter. the good thing about my major though is that it can be used for me being a police officer also just in case the fire fighter thing doesn't work out.

Paula Shiera  on 1/11/2021 9:41:11 AM

Hi, my name is Paula Shiera, I am a sixteen y/o High School Junior at CSR Academy. Throughout my whole life, especially during my years of high school, I have changed my mind about my career interests several times; however, last year, sophomore year, I concluded that my career of choice is Pediatric Dentistry. I applied for this scholarship because financially my parents are not able to pay for college, for this reason, I am also in the search of a job, the last thing I would like to do is to have my parents have another bill. Adding on to this, I have a 7 y/o sister and I would like to set an example for her and become her role model. I have taken care of my little sister since my family and I moved to Florida because my parents go to work early in the morning and they get home at night. As I said, this scholarship would not only help me pay for college but also set an example for my little sister. Thank you for taking the time to read my comment!

Addison M  on 12/27/2020 1:39:32 PM

Hi, my name is Addison Maurice, I am a sixteen and a junior at Nandua High School on the Eastern Shore of Virginia. Growing up where I have, I’ve always been told to get a useful degree, come back to my small town, marry a nice boy that I went to high school with, have a few kids, and then never use my degree again. Being the person I am, I’ve revoked those statements every time I’m told them. My dream is to move to New York City for college (cliche, I know) go to school for a degree in English with a minor in Public Relations and one day work for a publishing house as an Editorial Assistant, then slowly but surely work my way up to a Senior Editor. Most of my family supports this dream even if they consider it far-fetched, but the reason I’m applying to this scholarship is mostly because of my parents. About two months ago I moved out of both my parent’s houses and moved in with my grandparents. My mom is unreliable and not suited to be a parent. My dad is suited to be a parent, but he likes to be right all the time and tries to overpower me at most things my future being the most prevalent. If I allow my dad to pay for anything, it will give him an excuse to control my life and how I chose to live it. The reason why I need to go to college is not only because I love learning, it’s also so I can be a good role model for my sister who is only six, I would also like to be able to support her if my parents never could. Thank you for taking the time to read this. Have a great day!

Genessey C.  on 12/12/2020 12:45:10 AM

My name is Genessey Contreras, I am 16 and a junior at Summit High School. My dream is to graduate USC or any other great university in California with a Bachelors Degree in Communications and a minor in Dance and Choreography. I plan to pursue a career of becoming a Choreographer and Creative Director, and open my own arts center available to people from any background. I come from a family of six, but recently it turned into eight. A few months ago, my aunt, whose an ex-addict to heroin and is now going paralyzed, had moved in with me and my family along with her two-year-old daughter. Them moving in has been a rough journey: juggling school work, chores, caring for my little cousin and aunt. Both parents of mine work, but my father is more of the bread winner in our household, so we are tight with finances. Many times I have offered to work to help out, but they tell me to focus on school and that they got it. Since I was younger I had always promised my parents that when I'm older I'll handle everything and take care of them, and I will keep my word. I come from a long line of family curses: gang members, drug addicts, alcoholics, getting pregnant at young ages, not graduating high school and not attending college. I will break those chains and give my last name a new legacy. This scholarship is a blessing and a great opportunity to have, and I know if I was given the chance... I won't ever take it for granted. Thank you, blessing to you and stay safe!

TalaifinaT  on 12/10/2020 6:09:50 PM

Greetings, my name is Talaifina Tuuholoaki and I am 16 years old currently in my junior year of high school at Federal Way High School located in Federal Way Washington. Ever since I was young my dream was to become a Cardio thoracic surgeon or a Physician but it's too early in life to decide what I want to be because you'll never know when that dream will change, but for sure a career in the medical field. I always wanted to attend the University of Southern California because most of my family attended USC. I decided to apply for many scholarships as I can apply for because I want to go to college not only to make my parents proud but to also prove to my uncle and his family that my parents made the right decision of bringing me and my siblings to a different environment. Just the fact of college excites me and the journey that awaits for my future. This scholarship will allow me to help people that don't have the availability of seeking the medical attention they need and it would be a great stepping stone for me and my future. Thank you so much for your time and hopefully you and your family are doing well.

Matt B  on 11/28/2020 4:10:26 PM

I chose to apply to this scholarship because I feel as though this will be an amazing opportunity for me to create a career in medicine in the future. After high school I will use the scholarship money to pay for my tuition. If choosing for this scholarship this could make a big impact in my life And others to thank you for you time.

Beatrice D.  on 11/27/2020 2:20:03 PM

Good afternoon, my name is Beatrice Dello Ioio Lombardi, I'm Italian, and I'm 16 years old. I'm currently a junior attending Clear Falls High School. I'm applying for this scholarship because my dream has always been to attend medical school and become a physical therapist or a pediatrician, and since I only have a parent that can help me pay for college, which is my mom I need help financially. Becoming a physical therapist has always been my goal because I love helping people and save lives. This scholarship will help me to pursue my dream and follow a beautiful path in this career. Thank you, Respectfully, Beatrice Dello Ioio Lombardi

Sanyah S.  on 11/17/2020 9:18:13 AM

My name is Sanyah Stevenson. I am 14 years old living on the southside of Chicago, IL. I currently am a freshman at Gwendolyn Brooks College Prep and I wish to become a veterinarian or get a career in the real estate community. I know I´m very early with looking for colleges saying that I just started high school but I really wish to graduate my junior year and I believe this would help guarantee that I get into one of my dream colleges that accept high school juniors.

Zachary Malkowski  on 10/23/2020 3:49:51 PM

Let me briefly provide you an introduction to me, Zachary Malkowski. All my life I have struggled to communicate and express myself, my feelings, just try to convey who I am. You see, I am autistic. And what I have learned about Autism is this is typical behavior for a person who is on the spectrum. Odd though, the spectrum, that word implies that “it” is wide and vast, so how does one know exactly what is ‘typical’ for a person with Autism. Moving on, to fill the void and, admittedly so, possibly to hide from social interaction I have turned to technology. No I do not compete in the gaming community, another aspect of me is that I don’t like to let anyone down. This has hindered my ability to join group sports or anything of that nature. I do actively follow game and system legacies and upcoming new releases (I pretty much can tell you who any final boss is all the way back to Atari 2600). Furthermore, I am now enrolled in a Robotics Automation course at the local community college, I’m intrigued in seeing how things work. It’s nice to earn dual credits both for High School and College! I also enjoy history, all kinds. If I had to pick a favorite time period that intrigues me the most, I would have to say a tie with Ancient China and Medieval Times. This is probably why I am really interested in furthering my knowledge of sociology, I’m intrigued with understanding the “how did we get here” of social patters and behaviors. Lastly, and this may be a bit a shocker, but I have been recognized for my creative writing skills. I have had several papers passed around by teachers at the schools I’ve attended. Just because I don’t necessarily express myself as others do, doesn’t mean I can’t grasp the full understanding and capture this in words. I am an 18-year-old Autistic high school senior. My application will show that I do very well academically, however will not reflect my struggles to adapt socially. I am the youngest of 4 children, my closes sibling is 10 years old

Nicholis W  on 10/22/2020 1:37:04 PM

Hello, my name is Nicholis Weaver. I am 17 years old, I am currently attending my senior year in Cokeville High school. Post High school graduation I will be joining the Wyoming Army National Guard, due to my Pure love for having adrenaline rush from my head to my toes. Once I have Accomplished the honorary achievement of graduation from basic training and (MOS) Training, I will be attending The University of wyoming to get schooling to be a paramedic. Than due to my natural and unresting love for excitement I will be working on becoming a flight paramedic so that i can feel as if i have done something great in America. This Scholarship would help me immensely on my journey to becoming A flight paramedic, and keeping America great!

Chandler c  on 10/16/2020 12:44:50 AM

Good day, I am Chandler Cotton. I am a 17 year old Rising Senior who attends a nationally ranked high school, Booker T Washington HS, located in Tulsa, OK. I currently have a weighted 3.69 GPA and an unweighted 3.5 GPA with an ACT of 22. As I am getting ready to embark on my college journey, I realize that I will need some assistance in order to be able to truly succeed in the career of my choice, biology (pre-med). My goal is to become a cardiologist. Reason being is because my uncle died at the age of 50 due to a torn aorta in his heart. This hits home. This goal is not only for me, but him as well. This scholarship will enable and equip me with the resources needed to get through college and embark on my journey of becoming a well-respected cardiologist.

Sai Aasrita T  on 9/28/2020 2:47:53 PM

Hello, my name is Sai Thatraju and I am 15 years old. I am currently a sophomore at Ray Braswell High school with a dream to be able to become an Anesthesiologist, who will study at either Baylor University, or Columbia University I would like to become an anesthesiologist so that I am able to help people relieve their pain because taking up this career means I get to keep people warm, watch over their heartbeat, and feel what they can't when undergoing surgery or other extensive treatments. This scholarship will allow me to help myself pursue my dreams and help many other people who are in such a vulnerable state with kindness, empathy and knowledge. Thank you for your time!

Da'Hani M.  on 9/14/2020 1:18:13 PM

Hello, my name is Da'Hani Miller, i am 16 years old, and an uprising junior at T2 Honors Academy High school. i would like to apply for this scholarship to pursue my dream of becoming a pediatrician. i would like to direct the money to either medical school. My dream collage to attend is Oberlin university. This scholarship would be extremely helpful to get to that point, also itll make my mother proud and help me achieve my goals.

Crystal Olivarez  on 8/26/2020 4:48:49 PM

Greetings My name is Crystal Olivarez, I plan to study fashion design in Parsons New York. I will graduate in 2022 and will be a first generation to go to a university . I know that University’s cost a lot of money. Unfortunately my family can’t afford to pay for my college so this scholarship will really change the chances of me being able to make my dreams come true. Thanks in advanced :)

Yarely E  on 8/19/2020 11:17:26 AM

I applied for this scholar ship because going to college has always been something I've dreamed of but can't afford it. Going to college will make my mom proud and it's something I won't give up on.

Alexia R.  on 7/29/2020 7:10:54 PM

Hi my name is Alexia and I really would like this scholarship to pursue my dream of becoming a registered nurse. This would cover my community college cost and that would just be so helpful! Thanks, Alexia

Jada King  on 7/15/2020 2:37:22 PM

Hello my name is Jada King and I currently reside in Miramar, Fl. I am 16 years old and a junior at Everglades High School. At Everglades I partake in the Cambridge program where I take higher learning Aice courses along with being in Advanced Placement courses. I am applying for this scholarship because I would love to attend many great colleges to fulfill my dream of becoming an Anesthesiologist. I have many colleges in mind, but the ones that catch my eye are Florida State University, Florida A&M, and Duke University. I feel that this scholarship will help further me in my education and allow me to pursue my dream. Therefor, I highly anticipate that you will review my application and consider me for the scholarship. Thank you for your consideration on my behalf.

Prisha K  on 6/30/2020 2:39:15 PM

My name is Prisha Kittu and I am currently a Junior in High School. My main goal is to attend medical school and become a physician. Going to Medical School is tough so if I got this scholarship it would really be helpful towards my goal. Thank you for your time and consideration.

Zowie K.  on 6/17/2020 3:11:02 PM

Hi, I'm Zowie King. I'm 15, graduating high-school class of 2022. This scholarship would change my life, it's going to push me further to my goal of becoming a nurse practitioner. I want to get a better education (my education know is alright, but I know my potential).

Dyamond W  on 6/5/2020 3:20:23 AM

Hello ! My name is Dyamond Woods and I am a rising junior high school student at Patrick Henry High School. I am extremely interested in this scholarship. This scholarship could help out a lot financially and academically. Winning this scholarship would be a really good opportunity and also my parents would be proud to send me off to college with some financial help.

Gisselle C  on 6/3/2020 11:10:48 PM

I decided to apply for this scholarship because I want to accomplish my goal to become an Art Director. In addition, I would like to help my family and to help the homeless as well. I want to do this because I come from a family that has low income and I want to distribute food, clothes, and etc to the people who are in need. Thank you for reading my comment. :)

Ky’Tiana White  on 5/14/2020 10:37:35 PM

My name is Ky’Tiana White, I’m 17 and I’ve been in foster care my entire life. My entire life has been filled with setbacks and limitations. My entire life, people have told me what I could and could not do. They told me I was stupid and could never amount to anything, I have a 3.27 gpa and I’m pushing myself to try harder everyday to improve my life and my gpa score. I want to get a Bachelor's Degree in early childhood education and be the one to make a difference in that Child’s life. It all starts with this scholarship.

Jessica F  on 5/1/2020 4:59:43 PM

Hi my name is Jessica Fischer. I am currently a sophmore in highschool, and already looking forward to college. I am really looking forward to major in nursing and also going to costmetology school. I work really hard at my studies and always try my best at everything I do. Thank you for your time. I hope you pick me, as I would use it wisely.

Abigail M  on 4/23/2020 12:56:10 PM

I want to win this scholarship, because I have a passion for speaking and I feel this would be a wonderful opportunity to get a sense of the real world of public speaking. I am thinking about attending Arizona State University, and I think this would give me the proper head start to a flourishing future.

Lindy M  on 4/20/2020 1:16:28 PM

I am a junior at the Academy of Finance and Enterprise in Long Island City, NY and I am applying to this scholarship because I want to have a good education that my parents can afford with help so that I may be able to pursue a promising career as a CPA (certified public accountant). I will work hard to earn this scholarship.

Fatma M  on 4/14/2020 9:03:24 AM

In order to pursue my goals in life I need to study in a good school and I see this as a great opportunity

Drew Williams  on 4/7/2020 9:39:21 PM

I would like to apply for this scholarship. My father has been in and out of the hospital for 4 years. He is an amputee, diabetic, stroke survivor, and pneumonia survivor. This has made it difficult to pay bills because my mom is the only one working and she has two kids including me. This money would allow for me to pay to go to college so that I may better myself because I want to become a Chemical Engineer.

Cheyanne jordan  on 3/21/2020 2:13:02 AM

Hi my name is cheyanne jordan I’m 16 Currently a junior in High school. I Live In Bronx,New York i would really appreciate if I got this scholarship because I really want to attend university of Arizona and need as many chances as I can get so I can have a better future.Thank you for your time Sincerely, Cheyanne Jordan

Alexis W  on 3/18/2020 1:36:52 AM

I would like to apply for this scholarship. This would benefit me in the future and help me reach my goals in life. I want to attend a outstanding university and this scholarship will make all my dreams a reality.

Janeslyn Lopez  on 3/8/2020 8:54:52 PM

I definitely want to apply for this scholarship to be the second person in my family to graduate from a university. Having this opportunity will just make me so happy, and knowing that I will get to know more about my dream job.

Kurstyn O  on 1/31/2020 3:26:25 PM

I would like to apply.

Olivia N  on 1/23/2020 12:57:50 PM

I want to win this so I can be successful in the future to become a forensic scientist.

Danny C  on 1/16/2020 11:38:01 AM

I want to apply for this to make wise choices in life

Danny Dc  on 1/16/2020 11:27:33 AM

I am interested in giving my best for the money to make wise choices in lives

Lydia O  on 3/18/2019 1:18:50 PM

Am an international student in Iowa and would like to get this scholarship for a chance to continue my studies here in a more quiet and peaceful environment to accomplish my dream of being a neurosurgeon.

AT  on 9/25/2018 5:16:27 PM

I would like to apply

Nelly M  on 2/26/2018 1:08:30 PM

I would really like to get this scholarship because I want to get really good education. Not saying that where I get isn't good. It is good but very expensive. I have a sister doing IGCSE 2 and i'm doing IGCSE 1, I feel that it would be very good for us go get this because it's a lot for a single mom to this for us. I really wish we can get them

Evan P  on 1/12/2016 2:21:51 PM

I am high school senior at a small school in California, I am planning to attend a four year college in the fall of 2016 and major in sports management. I have been involved in sports for most of my life and know what i want to do after college. Both my parents work full time jobs and we manage to scrape by each month. I am bi-racial and was adopted by my now current parents they blessed me with all they have even though they do not have much to offer but i am so thankful for that. I myself or my parents have no money of any form to pay for college, so i must rely on scholarships to get my way through college.With not having much to began with I have learned that life is tough and not to make excuses no matter what comes your way, I have learned to work for what you need and once you start do not quit no matter how hard. That is how i plan to treat college to take it head on and conquer it, by winning this scholarship it will help me significantly to accomplish my goals. Thank you for considering me for this incredible opportunity Evan Pruitt

Alayshia G  on 12/31/2015 7:38:57 PM

I'm applying for this scholarship because I think it would be a great opportunity for me. I need help financially and think this would be a great start.

Dawn W  on 12/17/2015 10:39:42 PM

I am a senior in a small town of Missouri. I am going to attend Cottey College for four years which adds up close to $105,200 not including the cost of books. I was thinking on going to a community college or on campus college but my parents did not like that idea. So I found Cottey not knowing the cost. My parents are going to help a little bit but only for my books. My parents do not believe in student loans so it's up to scholarships and grants. I am wanting to be a nurse in surgery. I have watched few surgeries and think its amazing on how there are people saving another persons life in their. Please and thank you for your time.

Mahamud M  on 12/17/2015 5:37:29 PM

Wonderful opportunity and I I'm looking forward into attending for this scholarship, because I will attend a 4 year college and this will help me tremendously.

Kaitlyn H  on 12/17/2015 12:42:35 PM

I plan on applying for as many scholarships as I can.. My mom is a single parent and she works two jobs just to try and pay our bills. We're currently going through our second bankruptcy and things aren't looking too good.. With medical bills to pay between the both of us and my own personal debts to my grandparents, I work 28-36 hours a week at Taco Bell while maintaining my grades. I'm currently a senior in high school, but I am also a full-time post secondary student. Since I've worked almost all of high school, I never had time to join academic clubs or other extra curricular activities, so I've had to focus on my academics. With my being a first-generation college student and bi-racial (should I be able to get the grants and scholarships I need), it'd be a huge deal for me and my family.

Brian N  on 11/28/2015 3:09:22 AM

I am going to become an actor

Ebony O  on 6/23/2015 4:33:34 PM

Me and my mom are homeless and living in hotels. My mom can't afford to send me to college. So decided to apply for scholarships. To be honest I saw the amount and chose this scholarship. I do apologize if that hurt my chance to get this scholarship but I really want to attend college so I can become a successful woman so I can help my mom out and take care of her like she taken care of me. As a parent my mom did the best she could for me and my older bother he's in the army now but can't help us do to his situation. But if I can win this scholarship I promise to do right by it and finish college as plan. Thank you for considering me as a candidate.

maranda s  on 4/23/2015 11:52:48 AM

My grandfather is a Vietnam Veteran and he is proud to be part of The American Legion, I have listened to his stories some sad and some inspirational, I couldn't imagine how terrifying it was for him, He is so proud to have fought for our country and this would make him proud that you are helping children in our country to afford to go to college and get an education that he did not receive when he was younger when he was drafted to go to Vietnam ,he did not receive his high school diploma until he was in his 50s and he was so proud to have received it, He and other veterans are an inspiration to mine and other generation, Thank You.

Hannah C  on 3/25/2015 4:12:45 PM

I'm excited about applying for this scholarship! I know many people that are currently members of the American Legion and I know this is an amazing opportunity, I hope my application is looked over, and then over again. I am definitely the girl for this scholarship (-:

Anna S  on 1/26/2015 5:12:29 AM

I participated in this scholarship this year and I only won third place in the first round. However, it was an amazing experience and the people of the American Legion group were extremely helpful and kind. I really suggest this scholarship opportunity to everyone! I wish I had had more time to prepare. During the event you have time with the other contestants, so you can get to know each other, which really eases the nervousness! Good Luck to all that apply for this! Tell your friends about it! :D

Bethany G  on 2/23/2014 7:43:26 PM

Good luck to everyone who's applying

meagan r  on 1/27/2014 7:59:10 PM

I will be applying to this scholarship because this sounds like a great opportunity!

Katheryn M  on 11/9/2013 9:44:58 PM

I hope I win! Good luck to everyone applying!!

nina k  on 1/3/2013 6:59:32 AM

I would love to win this scholarship

Karen M  on 7/17/2012 9:44:58 PM

Wow, there is no way I am missing out on this!

Aaron S  on 12/6/2011 10:28:23 AM


Jessica A  on 5/16/2011 4:49:08 PM

Click on "What we do" and the oratorical contest will be the 7th on the list, took me a while to finally realize it. Hope this makes finding it a lot easier.

Stacy S  on 11/22/2009 8:49:14 PM

Catholic HS Students can apply. That would be what is called a parochial school...And they said that's okay.