Who can enter?
Freshmen who are enrolled in the College of Engineering and have satisfied less than 32 credits of coursework (not including AP credits) are eligible to enter the Steuber Prize for Excellence in First-Year Writing. (Upperclassmen enter the main Steuber Prize.)
Even if a first-year student has sophomore status because of AP credits, they have to enter the Steuber Prize for Excellence in First-Year Writing for a couple of reasons.
First, this contest, with its three clearly defined categories of writing, has been especially developed for freshmen. It has a judging panel whose expectations are more appropriate for students in their initial year of college coursework.
Second, the contest is restricted only to freshmen–that is, as noted above, students who have completed up to 32 credits of coursework (not including AP credits). There is a better chance of success because they are competing against other students in their first year of college coursework, rather than sophomores, juniors, and fourth- and fifth-year seniors.
What should I submit?
Entries may be on any topic that fits the competition’s categories, but the paper you submit must be 2500 words or less. Please submit four copies, all double-spaced. Include a copy of the entry form, downloadable here or available from the Technical Communication Program, Room 2107 Mechanical Engineering Building.
What are the categories and how are they designated?
After your title, indicate in square brackets—[R], [A], or [C]—which category you are entering, as described below:
- [R] for reflective non-fictional, non-technical, insightful writing (for instance, about engineering as a career, your interest in a particular engineering discipline or design; about your experience in college thus far; about a life-changing experience; about a travel or cultural experience that has changed your perspective)
- [A] for academic/non-fictional/technical writing (an informative, persuasive, or expressive paper or report)
- [C] for creative writing (a work of your imagination—poetry, fiction, drama, etc.)
When is the deadline to enter?
Entries must be received by noon on February 26, 2019. (The 2018 Competition has closed.)
Where do I submit my entries?
Submit your materials to the Technical Communication Program, Room 2107 Mechanical Engineering Building.
I’m a little nervous about entering. Got any tips for me?
Yes! Check out our writing tips.