Platt Family Essay Contest: Open to Undocumented Undergraduate Students with and without DACA

The Platt Family Essay Contest, administered by The Lincoln Forum, is open to undocumented undergraduate students (with and without DACA) in any state across the country. The first prize is $1500, the second prize is $750, and the third prize is $500. The topic this year to discuss in your essay: 2023 is the 160th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation. Does Abraham Lincoln deserve the title of ‘The Great Emancipator’? Why or why not?”

Guidelines for writing the essay:

  • Entries must contain a minimum of 1,500 and a maximum of 5,000 words.
  • The essay must be typed and include a works-cited page or bibliography. Endnotes are suggested but not required.


  • The scholarship essay contest is designed for students who are full time undergraduate students in an American College or University during the Spring 2023 semester. 
  • It is NOT open to high school students. Key question to consider; when we contact your college or university registrar will they be able to confirm that you were enrolled as a full-time college student during the spring 2023 semester? If the answer is no, you are not eligible.


Judging will take place during the fall of 2023. The three winners will be announced at The Lincoln Forum annual meeting in Gettysburg in November, 2023. Checks from The Lincoln Forum will be sent to the winners in December, 2023. Appropriate identification will be required.  The scholarship prize money is designed as a reward for academic excellence.

How to apply:

The essay can be sent via email ( or regular mail to the address below.

Don McCue, Director — Lincoln Memorial Shrine
125 W. Vine St.
Redlands, CA 92373
phone: (909) 798-7632

For more information or if you have questions, please contact Don McCue, Director of The Lincoln Shrine in Redlands, California at

The deadline to apply is July 31, 2023.

For more information, please visit this webpage.


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logo3ver2At My Undocumented Life we provide up-to-date information and resources for undocumented immigrants and allies. We post scholarship opportunities that are open to undocumented students, strategies for navigating the educational system, information on how to apply for DACA/Advance Parole, news on DAPA, and much more. Most importantly, we want to provide a sense of community to our diverse group of readers. Learn more about our work here: “About Us

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