Catholic College Scholarship Contest Invites Applications

The Cardinal Newman Society is pleased to announce its fifth annual Essay Scholarship Contest. The winning essay writer will be awarded $5,000 toward the cost of attending a faithful Catholic college recommended in The Newman Guide (see in the fall of 2021.

In addition, several Newman Guide colleges have agreed to supplement the Newman Society’s scholarship with additional $5,000 grants to the winner over three additional years, according to criteria established by each college.

All of the details about the Contest can be found at this link:

The Newman Society scholarship is made possible thanks to the generosity of Joe and Ann Guiffre, strong advocates of faithful Catholic education.

The contest is open to high school seniors in the United States who sign up for the Newman Society’s Recruit Me program, explore the Newman Society’s tips for navigating the college search, and check out the recommended colleges in The Newman Guide during their college search.

The topic for this year’s contest is to reflect, in 500-700 words, on the following:

Christ promised, “I am with you always, until the end of the age.” The year 2020 was tumultuous and divisive for a variety of reasons, including the COVID-19 pandemic, the election, racial tensions, and violence. How has any of this strengthened your resolve to attend a faithful Catholic college?

Essays will be judged by how well they demonstrate appreciation for faithful Catholic education, as well as the quality of the writing.

Last year, the Newman Society announced Maria Schmidt of Providence Academy in La Crosse, Wisconsin as the winner of the Society’s fourth annual Essay Scholarship Contest. She received a $5,000 scholarship toward her education at Ave Maria University in Ave Maria, Florida. She may also be eligible for additional $5,000 grants from Ave Maria University.

In her winning essay, Schmidt reflected on a recent Pew Research study that found that only 26 percent of self-professed Catholics under the age of 40 believe in the Real Presence of Jesus Christ in the Eucharist. Catholics should face the crisis of faith “with a renewed commitment to strong Catholic education and faith formation,” Schmidt argued.

“A good education helps form the whole person, laying down proper philosophical principles necessary for the pursuit of truth in all its classes and activities,” Schmidt wrote.

Schmidt reminded us that the crisis of faith in our country and in the world is “not unprecedented.”

“Like the monks of Cluny Abbey who saved the faith of Europe in the tenth century, let us first reform ourselves through strong Catholic education and spiritual nourishment,” she wrote. “That is the first step towards the reform of the crisis, and another of many steps toward heaven.”

Schmidt’s entire essay can be read here.

Questions about this year’s Essay Scholarship Contest can be directed to

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