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Essay Contest

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High School Scholarship Essay Contest 

Enter the 2021 Black History Month Scholarship Essay Contest

CPS Students submit essay via Academic Works

Non-CPS Students submit essay to

2021 Essay Question:

"Tell us about an African American leader in Finance or Investments who has paved the way or is paving the way for future leaders and how you can make an impact in your community." (600-1200 words)

As part of the Treasurer’s High School Scholarship Essay Contest, the Treasurer’s office annually awards non-renewable scholarships, sponsored by BMO Harris Bank, to support the cost of attending the first year of college to two high school students. This scholarship, open during Black History Month and Hispanic Heritage Month, recognizes seniors in high school who have displayed outstanding academic achievement or community involvement and who write a thoughtful and impactful essay on a topic related to the respective heritage month. This scholarship is open to all Chicago High Schools seniors and requires no minimum grade point average.  Click here for more information and eligibility requirements.


Below are the winners of previous Hispanic Heritage Month and Black History Month scholarships:  

2020 - 2021

Hispanic Heritage Month

First Place: Alissa Medina - $1,500

Second Place: Jacqueline Guzman - $1,000 


2019 - 2020

Hispanic Heritage Month 

First Place: Abel Almanza - $1,500 
Second Place: Yovani Villeda Alvarez - $1,000 


Black History Month 

First Place: Tyler Smith - $1,500 

Second Place: Iyana Gross - $1,000