USD Just Read! Student Essay Contest

books with logo Just Read Student Essay Contest

2017-2018 USD Just Read! Student Essay Contest

 Announcing the 2017-2018 Just Read! Student Essay Context.  Any current USD student is eligible to enter.

Essay Topic

With a specific argument, consider a current social justice issue with direct relationship and connection to issues raised by the content and/or context of Between the World and Me. As part of your argument, Between the World and Me should be discussed and cited directly. You may also cite outside sources, but it is not a requirement. Submissions may be individually or group authored.

Essay Rules

  • Suggested essay length is around 1300 words (1500 words max).
  • Entries due: March 16, 2018 * Deadline extended to April 6 via an online submission form, accessible via the USD Portal or via this link
  • Entries will be judged by select faculty and administrators involved with USD Just Read!

Judging Criteria

Essays that meet the Submission Requirement will be scored on the four criteria listed below.

Significance: Identify and address a social justice issue that is of significant concern stemming from your reading of Between the World and Me.

Social Justice Principles: Explicitly identify the principles that are relevant and important to your considering at the issue(s).

Strength of Argument: Provide supportive evidence (e.g., personal narrative, scholarly sources) for your argument in a clear and organized manner

Connection to Book: Connect and integrate your argument with ideas from Between the World and Me in a complex and deep manner.


1st Place $400

2nd Place $200

3rd Place $100

Winning essays will be featured on the CEE website and in USD publications.