Read Time: 3 minutes

Essay Prompt

Consider the following theme inspired by David O. McKay: “It is well for educators everywhere when teaching the young to have in mind Character, Conduct, and Citizenship.” (See graphic below for more information on the “Three C’s”)

Write about a time during your McKay School experience when you saw the importance of McKay’s “Three C’s,” and how you will implement them into your own professional practice upon graduation. Please keep your essay to 500 words or less.

Your essay will be judged on the following three points:

  1. Reader engagement – 40 points
  2. Development of the theme – 50 points
  3. Grammar and writing – 10 points

All entries must be received by Google Forms on or before 11:59 p.m. on September 24, 2022. Submit essay here


This contest is open to two groups of entrants, who will be judged separately: McKay School graduate students and McKay School undergraduate majors. Secondary education majors are not eligible.


No Identifying Information

Neither the name of the author nor any other identifying information should appear in the essays themselves, including document headers and footers.

Word Limit and Style

There is a 500 word limit. Use one-inch margins and 1.5 line spacing. Chicago style is recommended. Please use a standard font, either serifed or sans serif, and do not include photographs or other graphics as part of your essay. You may indicate in the submission form that you have appropriate graphics to add to your entry if it is chosen for publication.


Contest winners and finalists may be published by the McKay School Magazine. The following prizes will be awarded for both undergraduate and graduate winners:

First Place: $1,000
Second Place: $750
Third Place: $500


Judging will be blind and done by a panel of subject-matter experts. The judges reserve the right to withhold any award if no entry merits the ratings established. Judging begins once the contest deadline has passed and takes up to two weeks. Both winners and non-winners will be notified of the results by email.

Academic Honesty

BYU students should seek to be totally honest in their dealings with others. For this contest, you should complete your own work, in your own words, and should avoid academic dishonesty and misconduct in all its forms, including but not limited to plagiarism (direct or indirect), fabrication or falsification, and any other unethical practice. Entries that are found to violate this principle will be automatically excluded from the competition. For more information, see the university's academic honesty policy at

Right of First Refusal

Entering this contest indicates that you agree to give BYU McKay School the right of first refusal to publish all or part of your essay. We do not accept work that has been published or is under consideration elsewhere, that has previously won any award from another contest, or that may be the property of another publisher. Entries that are defamatory, profane, vulgar, racist, or bigoted will be automatically disqualified from consideration.

David O McKay

View full quote by David O. McKay.