The Freedom Scholarship

The Freedom Scholarship

The Willow Canyon Foundation is proud to present the Freedom Scholarships Essay Contest. A series of awards are available, ranging from $250 to $1,000. The awards are to be used by the recipients to further their education and will be paid toward tuition or books at a university, college or trade school.


The essay contest is open to juniors and seniors at any Utah high school as well as to individuals currently enrolled in GED prep classes, or who have passed the GED exam within 6 months of the contest deadline. To participate, students must select a speech from our CD set,Great American Speeches, and write an essay discussing the ideals and principles within the speech. The essays will require young men and women to inquire into the ethics, conducts and values that first inspired the Founding Fathers of the United States, and that have resulted in America becoming this great country.


Our Great American Speeches CD set was produced to make the great ideas of our Founding Fathers easily accessible to a large aduience. All profits from the sale of the CD support our charitable work, including the Freedom Scholarships. You may purchase Great American Speeches online, or by contacting us. You are not required to purchase the CD to participate in the essay contest, we will donate a CD to your school library for check out, you may read the transcripts online, or you may conduct your own independent research. To request a CD set for your school please contact us by phone or email, and tell us your school's name, address, librarian's name, and your contact information in case there are any questions.


There are currently two rounds of the essay contest, spring and fall. The Spring deadline for entries is April 23, 2010. Students may enter as often as they like, though will only be eligible to win one time per year. Please check back for information on the Fall round.

Our Goals for the Freedom Scholarships

In creating this scholarship program our goals are to promote the study, discussion and understanding of our nation's founding principles. We hope to encourage deeper thought not only to the history of our country, but to ensure that these important principles are considered and applied today. We believe that a deeper understanding of these ideals is necessary for the preservation and advancement of our free and just society- particularly among the rising generations. 


Tips for Writing a Winning Essay

The essay should be about your personal thoughts and insights about the speech. Our scholarship board is very familiar with the speeches, so please don't report on the content of the speech. We are not looking for history reports, but evidence that you have thought about the ideals and principles within the speech. For example, we would like to know why you think the speech is important, if you agree with the speaker, if you think our society has fallen behind the ideal or progressed beyond since the speech was given and give examples.


As you prepare to write your essay, we encourage you to discuss the principles and your ideas with your family and friends- this will help to clarify your thoughts and spur on new insights. Below are a few questions to get you started, though we will accept essays that discuss your own questions, as long as it falls within the overall goals of the contest. You may contact us if you have any questions or need any clarification.

  • What is the main ideal or principle in this speech and is it uniquely American? Why or why not?
  • How is the speech relevant or significant today versus when it was given?
  • Does our current society and government value the ideal in the same way? Provide examples.



Entries should be approximately 1000-1500 words, double-spaced and typed. Entries must have a cover sheet that includes: name, date of birth, school name and grade, email address, home address and phone number. If you are currently enrolled in a GED prep classes, please include a letter from the course instructor verifying your enrollment. If you have recently passed the GED, please include a copy of your certificate. And please tell us how you heard about the contest. Entries must be postmarked or received by April 23, 2010 for the spring round. Winners will be notified by May 28, 2010. 


Essays will be judged by our scholarship board. The scholarship winners will have their essays posted on our website and also in local newspapers when possible.


Submissions will be accepted by mail:

Freedom Scholarship Essay Contest
Willow Canyon Foundation
9192 S. 300 W. Suite 28A
Sandy, UT 84070

Electronic submissions will also be accepted. Please send them to Electronic submissions must be Word documents. We will reply to confirm that your essay was received.