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KU School of Medicine's Office of Student Affairs encourages our students to show off their writing skills by entering esteemed essay contests, all of which come with monetary awards.

Alpha Omega Alpha Helen H. Glaser Student Essay Award  
Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Medical Society instituted this competition to encourage medical students to write creative narratives or scholarly essays relevant to medicine. Authors must be enrolled at medical schools with active AOA chapters but need not be members of AOA. Only one entry may be submitted by each student.  

  • Prizes:  $1,500 first, $1,000 second and $850 third.  
  • Deadline: Early to mid-January. Winners will be announced in May. 

Mensa Education and Research Foundation Scholarship Essay Contest 
Awards are made on the basis of an essay of fewer than 550 words which describes the applicant's career and their vocational or academic goals toward which the scholarship is to provide aid. It is not necessary for the applicant to be a member of Mensa.

  • Prizes: Range from $300 to $1,000.
  • Deadline: Early to mid-January.

Michael E. DeBakey Medical Student Poetry Award 
This annual contest honors the preeminent cardiovascular surgeon, pioneering medical scientist, gifted medical educator, prolific author and scholar, and passionate advocate of optimal health care throughout the world, Dr. Michael E. DeBakey. He long advocated a role for the humanities in medical education and in the development of a full, enriching intellectual life. Submission of original poetry by medical undergraduates currently enrolled in accredited U.S. medical schools is welcome. 

  • Prizes:$1,000 first, $500 second and $250 third. 
  • Deadline: January 31.

Stanley M. Kaplan Essay Contest 
Entries may include original research, review articles, case reports or topic essays. Judging will be based on originality, creativity, knowledge of psychiatry and contributions to understanding important problems in any of the biopsychosocial dimensions of psychiatry.

  • Prizes:$500 first, $250 second and $250 third. 
  • Deadline: Mid-June.

William Osler Medal Student Essay Contest 
Awarded for the best unpublished essay on a medico-historical subject written by a student enrolled in a school of medicine or osteopathy. Essays appropriate for consideration may pertain either to the historical development of a contemporary medical problem or to a topic within health sciences of a discrete past period. The writer of the winning essay will be invited to attend a conference where the medal will be presented. 

  • Prizes: Reasonable travel expenses provided to the conference and a free two-year membership of the American Association for the History of Medicine (AAHM). 
  • Deadline: January 31.
KU School of Medicine

University of Kansas Medical Center
KU School of Medicine Office of Student Affairs

3901 Rainbow Boulevard
Kansas City, KS 66160-7303
Phone: 913-588-1483