The 2024 Paideia High School Essay Contest

In Medias Res |

Win a trip to Greece this summer!

Living Greek in Greece High School students at the Temple of Apollo at Delphi.

The Paideia Institute is pleased to announce its seventh annual high school essay contest. We will publish the winning essay in In Medias Res, and the winner will receive a full scholarship to our Living Greek in Greece High School summer program. The prompt for this year's contest is:

Why should we study classical Greek? Or ancient Greek culture? We invite you to reflect on both your own personal reasons for embarking on Greek study, as well as more general reasons why the study of ancient Greek language and culture can be valuable. The best essays will give a sense of why Classics, and in particular ancient Greek, matters to you, but also help persuade others to pursue learning about the ancient Greeks. Think of this less as a college application essay, and more of a manifesto, an effort to encourage others to join the happy throng of students of ancient Greece.


  • Your current ability and knowledge of ancient Greek doesn't matter. Write about what you know, and why you would like to know more.
  • Feel free to include examples, where appropriate, from any Greek literature, history or art that has excited or interested you. Literature in translation is fine!
  • Don't just tell your reader why ancient Greece matters; try to show it with examples you've discovered from ancient Greek culture. The word 'valuable' is intentionally vague. You could explore why ancient Greek is valuable politically, historically, personally, psychologically, etc. It's up to you!

Essay submissions are due on February 19th, 2024 and should not exceed 800 words. Please include your first and last name, grade level, and email address at the top of your essay. Essays should be emailed to [email protected] in PDF format with the subject line "2024 High School Essay Contest Submission." Submissions that do not meet these requirements will not be considered. For more information about Living Greek in Greece High School, please visit the program overview page. Please note that the essay contest prize scholarship does not include airfare to and from Greece. High school freshmen through graduating seniors are eligible to participate in the essay contest.





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In Medias Res

In Medias Res is the online magazine for lovers of Latin and Greek, published by the Paideia Institute.


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