This year, the Chestnut Hill Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 5205, 8217 Germantown Ave. is again looking for submissions for the Voice of Democracy audio essay competition.

The competition is a national contest sponsored by VFW in which audio essays are judged and compete in regional, state and national levels with $2.2 million in scholarship prizes awarded to winners.

Two years ago, Springside Chestnut Hill Academy student George Calle won $500 when his essay was chosen to be the best of the Philadelphia region’s 20 member VFW posts.

Each year, nearly 40,000 high school students from across the country enter to win a share of the $2.2 million in educational scholarships and incentives awarded through the VFW’s Voice of Democracy audio-essay competition.

The VFW established the Voice of Democracy program (VOD) in 1947 to provide students in grades 9-12 the opportunity to express themselves in regards to democratic ideas and principles.

The national first-place winner receives a $30,000 scholarship paid directly to the recipient’s American university, college or vocational/technical school. Other national scholarships range from $1,000 to $16,000, and the first-place winner from each (State) VFW Department wins an all-expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C.

The Voice of Democracy Program is open to students in grades 9-12 (on the Nov. 1 deadline), who are enrolled in a public, private or parochial high school or home study program in the United States and its territories.