Congratulations to the 2012 Award Winners!
“All I did was stand up for what I believed.”
ETHICS. . . To live an ethical life requires not only tremendous personal courage and conviction but also an incredibly high ethical standard.
The National Council of Teachers of English is proud to partner with the Muhammad Ali Center and the Norman Mailer Center and Writers Colony to offer an award for college students honoring Muhammad Ali’s legacy of living a life dedicated to high ethical standards.
We are seeking submissions that address relevant ethical topics of this generation. As you identify an ethical issue to address for the purposes of this competition, consider Muhammad Ali’s accomplishments and values and how these values address the topic you have chosen. Please visit the Muhammad Ali Center for more information regarding Ali’s values.
One winner will be selected to receive the following:
- A week-long writing workshop at the Mailer Center in Provincetown, Massachusetts during summer of 2013
- Recognition by the Muhammad Ali Center and the Norman Mailer Center at the Norman Mailer Center’s Annual Gala on October 4, 2012
- Travel, lodging, and gala tickets for the winner, courtesy of the Muhammad Ali Center
Submissions will be read by national panels of teachers and writers. They will be judged by how well they demonstrate the following in relation to an ethical issue: understanding; original thinking and insight; effectiveness in presenting a point-of-view; achieving an overall emotional or intellectual effect.
Submissions will be judged on the following:
• Understanding: The writer should demonstrate a deeper understanding of the topic than might be encountered in general public discussions.
• Original thinking and insight; The writer should offer some original thought regarding the complexity of the topic and also some fresh insight in how one might approach the ethical issue being discussed.
• Effectiveness in presenting a point-of-view; The essay should present a clear position that grows out of the writer's understanding and insight.
• Achieving an overall emotional or intellectual effect; The elements of the essay should work together to establish a strong overall emotional or intellectual effect.
Entries can focus on any aspect of ethics -- from ethics across cultures to personal, medical, or business ethics, and more. Writers can choose to explore ethical issues surrounding military policy, cultural differences, public policy, or any other subject they feel is ethically relevant.
Writers are encouraged to think broadly about the issue of ethics and how it applies to the larger world. For this contest writers should consider "Ethics" as the "discipline dealing with what is good and bad and with moral duty and obligation," or as a study "dealing with values relating to human conduct, with respect to the rightness and wrongness of certain actions and to the goodness and badness of the motives and ends of such actions." The contest is not looking for formal philosophical statements, but essays that draw the reader into thoughtful considerations of how people approach current ethical issues.
Sample topics might include the following: the ethics of holding detainees in Guantanamo Bay; the ethics of firing drones away from an active battle field; the ethics of being an international company attempting to impose western values regarding women on middle eastern countries; the ethics of funding prisoners’ rights programs while defunding initiatives in public schools; the ethics of food justice (we all have a right to food--access and availability).
The competition is open to full-time undergraduate students, and first- and second- year full-time students enrolled in community colleges, junior colleges, and technical colleges. Entries should be a maximum of 10 single-spaced pages and no more than 5,000 words. Authors retain copyright of their work. Deadline for submissions is July 23, 2012, Noon CDT.
The 2012 Muhammad Ali Award for Writing on Ethics Brochure
2012 Muhammad Ali Ethics Winner
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