The Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. State Holiday Commission, chaired by Rep. Raymond A. Hull (D-Dist. 6, Providence, North Providence) has announced the annual essay contest for the upcoming holiday event.

“Every year, this essay contest tends to be one of the most enjoyable aspects of our yearly celebration and the commission and event attendees truly look forward to what our state’s youth have to say regarding the legacy of Dr. King and I encourage all of our students to participate in this year’s contest,” said Representative Hull.

Four winners will be chosen (2 middle school students and 2 high school students) and prizes of $100 will be awarded to the first place entries and a $50 prize will be awarded to the second place entries. 

The contest is open to all middle and high school students in Rhode Island.

High school students are asked to write a speech that identifies and explains their dream of a society that reflects the values and principles of Dr. King. 

Middle school students are asked to write a letter to Dr. King that expresses gratitude, seeks advice, and presents a possible solution to racial inequalities in our modern times.

The contest rules are as follows:

  • Entries must be from RI middle or high school students
  • Essays must be typed in the Microsoft Word format and limited to 500-750 (middle school) or 750-1000 words (high school)
  • Essays must include completed parental permission form (attached) and be submitted individually as the original work of only one student
  • Essays and permission forms MUST be electronically submitted to RIMLKESSAY@gmail.com
  • The Commission reserves the right to promote, publish, and/or distribute any or all entries.

The deadline for applicants is Thursday, December 15.


Ryan Belmore is the Owner and Publisher of What'sUpNewp.  Belmore has been involved with What’sUpNewp since shortly after its launch in 2012, proudly leading it to be named Best Local News Blog in...