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Essay Contest for Students in grades 6-12 who have been nominated by an educator

Topic: Your life without modern technology

What do you think your life would be like without cell phones, computers, and video games? Would your life change completely? Would you be happier or healthier? Would life be boring or more exciting? How would you spend your time? How would you communicate? How would you gather information? Send us an essay of 500 words about your life without modern technology. Give your essay a title. Essays must be received by April 26, 2016.

All essays submitted must be typed and double-spaced. Essays must have a title. Only one entry per student. Your name, home address, email address, nominating teacher, school name, city and state, and your grade level must appear on the first page of the text. You can email your essay to or mail it to USAA, 2610 Palumbo Drive, Lexington, KY 40509.

Essays from different grade levels are not compared to each other. For example, a 6th grade student’s essay is not compared to a 12th grader’s essay. Instead, it is judged individually based on the writing capabilities and expectations of a 6th or 12th grader.

USAA will choose the top three essays and award the following: First Place $500, Second Place $300, and Third Place $150. Winners will also receive one complimentary book. We will publish all three essays in the 2016 USAA National Yearbook. You will become a published author in a nationally distributed book. Publication is an honor that stays with you for a lifetime.

All entries become the property of the United States Achievement Academy and will not be returned. Participation in this contest allows USAA to use short stories in the Academy’s publications. Good luck to everyone!

The United States Achievement Academy is pleased to announce the winners of our 2014-2015 Short Story Contest.

  • 1st Place - Kyla Frenia, Wissahickon Middle School, Ambler, PA, Nominating Teacher – Mr. Towarnicki
  • 2nd Place - Olivia Lawler, Olathe Northwest High School, Olathe, KS, Nominating Teacher– Ms. Magaha
  • 3rd Place - Lauren Skinner, Farquhar Middle School, Olney, MD, Nominating Teacher – Ms. Chaney

  • Congratulations to the winners! Thanks to all who participated.

    Writing Contest Winners "Open Topic" 2013-2014

    We are excited to announce the winners of our writing contest, “Open Topic”, for the 2013-2014 school year. Our contests have become very popular with our teachers and students, and the response has been gratifying for all. We have received over 2000 short stories! It certainly has made the selection process very difficult. All of you are to be commended for your writing. Following are three teachers and three students that were chosen to receive the contest prizes:
    Teacher - 1st Place - Connie Laws, Marymount School of New York, New York, New York
    Teacher - 2nd Place - Patrick Meehan, Louise R Johnson MS of International Studies, Bradenton, FL
    Teacher – 3rd Place - James G. Fabiano, Newmarket Jr/Sr High School, Newmarket, NH
    Student – 1st Place - Maria Guseva, McDowell Intermediate HS, Millcreek, PA, Grade 9, nominating teacher - Mr. Kocher
    Student – 2nd Place - Isabella McLeod, Gardiner Middle School, Oregon City, OR, 7th grade, nominating teacher – Keyla Santiago
    Student - 3rd place - Marissa Spatz, Auburndale Middle/High School, Auburndale, WI, 7th grade, nominating teacher - Sheila Cherney
    Congratulations to all for a job well-done. As a reminder to students, be sure to return your Student Biography form to the Academy as soon as possible. You will receive a Scholarship Application to complete and return to the Academy for consideration of an educational cash grant

    2013 Spring Short Story Contest Winners

    The United States Achievement Academy is pleased to announce the winners of our short story contest, “The Best Field Trip Ever”..

    • 1st place - Walter Browne, Eastern Regional High School, Voorhees, NJ
    • 2nd place - Bobbie Jo Tate, Sheep Harney Elementary School, Elizabeth City, NC
    • 3rd place - Dan Duhon, Selwyn College Preparatory School, Denton, TX

    • 1st place - Madison Jackson, Solon High School, Solon, OH
    • 2nd place - Natalie DeLeon, Erick High School, Erick, OK
    • 3rd place - Nicholas Tsoutsos, Fort Caroline Middle School, Jacksonville, FL



    Congratulations to the winners! Thanks to all who participated.