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July 16, 2012

Essay contest commemorates U.S. Constitution anniversary

“Free Expression and the First Amendment” is the topic of a high school essay contest to commemorate the 225th anniversary of the U.S. Constitution.

Sponsored by the University of Louisiana at Monroe Department of Communication, the contest is open to all public, private and home schooled high school students in Ouachita and Lincoln parishes.

The contest will be part of a larger observance of the anniversary, which will also include a guest speaker, Ken Paulson, president and CEO of the First Amendment Center, who will deliver the keynote speech Sept. 25.

The contest topic focuses on the free expression component of the First Amendment.

Specifically, it asks: “Other than what has already been prescribed into law as unprotected free speech (obscenity or threats to national security, for example) what, if any, should be the limits to free expression?”

Entry requirements are as follows:

All entrants into the essay contest will be invited with their family and friends to a reception Sept. 25.

Mailed submissions must be postmarked no later than Sept. 18.

Electronic submissions must be received no later than 8 p.m. CDT Sept. 20.

Hand-delivered submissions should be delivered no later than 4 p.m. CDT Sept. 20.

Mail or hand deliver submissions to:
University of Louisiana at Monroe
Department of Communication
401 Bayou Drive
120-D Stubbs Hall
Monroe, LA 71209
Attn: Dr. Peggy J. Bowers

Winners will be contacted by telephone or email. 

Sponsors include Charles Kincade, EPCO Carbon Dioxide, The News-Star, Ouachita Independent Bank, the law firm of McNew, King, Mills, Birch and Landry, the law firm of Hudson, Potts and Bernstein, The Free Press, David Verlander and Travis Holley.

Sponsorships are still available.

Please contact Dr. Peggy Bowers for more information at 318-342-1462 or

For more information about the essay contest visit

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