Program Description

Each year more than 165,400 students in grades 6-8 enter the VFW’s Patriot's Pen youth essay contest for a chance to win their share of more than $1,400,000 in cash awards at the Post, District, State and National levels.  Each first-place State winner receives a minimum of $500 at the National level, and the National first-place winner wins $5,000 and an all-expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C. 

This essay contest encourages young minds to examine America's history, along with their own experiences in modern American society, by drafting a 300- to 400-word essay, expressing their views based on a patriotic theme chosen by the VFW Commander-in-Chief.

VFW Post 12002 is once again proud to support this Program and provide the following cash prizes at the Post level :

                    1st Place Winner  - $200.00        2nd Place Winner  -  $150.00        3rd Place Winner  -  $100.00

For each 15 entries received by the Post, one winner is entered into the District 3 competition for additional cash awards and a chance to compete at the State level.

How to Apply

1.  Read the Rules and Eligibility Requirements

2.  Download and complete the 2021-2022 Entry Form  

3.  If you have any questions, contact Post 12002's Patriot's Pen Program Chairman :

                  Harald Sundal    678-557-3789

4.  Submit your Entry Form and typed Essay by Mail or eMail to the Program Chairman by midnight on October 31

This Year's Theme 

The 2021-2022 theme is   How Can I Be a Good American ?

About the 2020-2021 Winners

Last year's Post 12002 Winners entered in the District 3 competation were :

    1st Place    Josh P. Gaus       Queen of Angels Catholic School (Roswell)
    2nd Place    Cecilia Hodgman    Queen of Angels Catholic School (Roswell)
    3rd Place    Trijal Tagadur     Piney Grove Middle School (Cumming)
     4th Place    Grayson Perlman    Queen of Angels Catholic School (Roswell)

    5th Place    Aadita B. Parekh   Autrey Mill Middle School (Alpharetta)

Two additional entries to our Post were sent to another Post in our District and one of these, Ingrid Schmitz, was District 3's 1st-Place Winner !

Wesley Vickers, from Toccoa, Georgia, was the Winner at the State Level.

Wyatt Perkins, a sixth grade home school student from Mayville, North Dakota, was named the 2020-2021 Patriot's Pen first place winner at the National Level.  His essay on the theme, "What is Patriotism to Me?" won him a $5,000 award.  Wyatt was sponsored by VFW Post 4221 in Portland, North Dakota.

Watch Wyatt deliver his winning essay during the VFW's first-ever virtual Parade of Winners streamed live on Facebook

Watch last year's virtual Parade of Winners on YouTube

See the complete list of 2020-2021 National Winners