Stim Bullitt Civic Courage Scholarship

Write about civic courage | Win a $5,000 scholarship
Who is your local hero?

Note: The 2019 competition is now closed. Please check back again to learn about the winners and the opening of the 2020 contest.

The Seattle Public Library Foundation is pleased to host the Stimson Bullitt Civic Courage Scholarship competition. High school seniors and undergraduate students who live, work or attend school in Seattle are invited to participate.

The competition asks students to write an essay about an individual or group of individuals from Washington state who have demonstrated civic courage on an issue of importance to the community at great personal, political or professional risk.

Read about the 2018 scholarship recipients!

Applicants must:

  • Reside, attend school, or work in Seattle.
  • Be 13 years of age or older.
  • Have an active Seattle Public Library card.
  • Be a current high school senior or undergraduate enrolled at a two or four year college.

To qualify, the essay must:

  • Contain at least 3 sources including at least one primary source;
  • Contain a bibliography and in-text citations using a standard format (for example: MLA);
  • Be between 1,500-2,000 words (excluding the citations or bibliography;
  • Be double-spaced and in at least 12-point font.

Please see Official Rules for complete details on eligibility and essay requirements. Click here to preview judging criteria.

1st Place: $5,000 scholarship
2nd Place: Two $2,500 scholarships

Distinguished Authors
The Foundation is pleased to announce that distinguished authors Jon Krakauer, Jonathan Raban, and Paula Becker will serve as this year’s essay review panel. The review panel will determine the final winners.

In addition to the scholarship prize, the winning essays will be added to the collection in the Hugh and Jane Ferguson Seattle Room at The Seattle Public Library.

The Legacy Behind the Scholarship
Learn more about Stimson Bullitt, a great civic leader. Click here.

Inspiration, Examples and Research Assistance