2024 Conference

Essay Contest


Utah NAME is pleased to announce the launch of our Scholarship Essay Contest for Students. The contest is open to all middle/junior high school students (grades 6-9) and high school students grades 10-12) attending schools in Utah.

This contest aims to encourage young minds to explore and express their thoughts on the theme of "Igniting the Power Within: Nurturing Unity and Compassion in Education," aligning with the spirit of the Utah NAME Conference.


The contest is open to all middle/junior high (grades 6–9) and high school students (grades 10-12) attending schools in Utah.


All essays must be submitted by Monday, February 5, 2024, at 11:59 pm (MT) via the form.

2024 Essay Contest Form


  1. Length: Essays should be between 500-800 words.

  2. Format: Submissions should be typed in 12-point Times New Roman font, double-spaced, and submitted in PDF format.

  3. Originality: Plagiarism and the use of AI when writing the essay is strictly prohibited. All entries must be the original work of the participant.


Please use the information below to answer the 2024 Essay Prompt below.

  • As a middle school/high school student, you have the power to harness your passion for diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) in your schools today. As a change-maker, you are also empowering yourselves to create positive change in the future far outside the walls of your school.

  • What are you and your classmates, teachers, and administrators doing at your school or in your classrooms to educate and promote people coming together to create positive change in our society? Looking into the future, what do you hope to do to encourage others to embrace differences and celebrate diversity, equity, and inclusion?


A panel of judges will assess the essays based on the following criteria:

  1. Adherence to the Theme: The extent to which the essay explores the theme of "Igniting the Power Within: Nurturing Unity and Compassion in Education."

  2. Creativity and Originality: The uniqueness and creativity in presenting ideas.

  3. Clarity and Coherence: The clarity of expression and organization of thoughts.

  4. Grammar and Style: Proper grammar, punctuation, and overall writing style.

  • High School—Grades 10-12
    • 1st Place--$500.00
    • 2nd Place--$250.00

  • Middle/Junior High School—Grades 6-9
    • 1st Place--$500.00
    • 2nd Place--$250.00

  • *UT NAME will notifiy students and their supporting educators via email by Monday, February 12, 2024.

  • The winners of the Essay Contest will have the opportunity to come to the 2024 Conference (Saturday, February 24, 2024 at The Utah Cultural Celebration Center) and read their essays, as well as receive their certificates and scholarship money.

  • *If students are unable to attend the Conference, the winning students will be able to claim their scholarships and certificates from their school’s Main Office following the conference.

**NOTE: Students do not have to attend the conference to be eligible for these scholarships.


To participate, eligible students must submit their essays, along with a completed application form available on our website, by Monday, February 5, 2024, at 11:59 pm (MT)


For inquiries or additional information, please contact Conference Chair Courtney Clausen at courtney.clausen@usu.edu.


This scholarship is sponsored by the School of Education at UVU.


Past Winners

2023 High School

Andrea Larsen, Providence hall
Nivetha Karthikeyan, Providence Hall

2023 Middle School

Yesly Rios, Legacy Preparatory Academy
Evelyn Sanchez Olivarez, Bennion Junior High

2021 High School

Elsie Beutler, Timpview High School
Jennifer Cendejas, Mountian Crest High School

2021 Middle School

Clair Brown, Farmington Junior High
Ama Barrour, AMES
Diane Bahati, AMES

2015 High School

Shams Al-shawbak, East High School
Javiera Carrasco, Cottonwood High School
Sara Ortiz, Logan High School

2015 Middle School

Leba Kepu, Matheson Junior High School
Dulce Rabadan, Matheson Junior High School

2013 High School

José Alexander Garcia, West High School
Shauntee Noble-Lunger, Cottonwood High School
Marisol Perez-Gonzalez, Cottonwood High School
Juniper Roman, Grand County High School

2013 Middle School

Aruna Dhungel, Granite Park Junior High School
Musa Taha, Granite Park Junior High School