Current Contest

David O. McKay
Essay Contest

This essay contest is in honor of President David O. McKay, created to encourage a search for the high ideals contained in the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and to encourage the application of those principles in everyday life.


The Restored Gospel and Applied Christianity (Personal essays should stress the application of gospel ideals in daily living)


All full-time students at Brigham Young University. Entries will be accepted in two divisions: Undergraduate and Graduate Students.




First Prize $1,200
Second Prize $1,000
Third Prize $700

At the discretion of the judges, additional prizes of $450 and $300 may also be awarded. The judges reserve the right to withhold any award of entries do not merit the ratings established.

Brigham Young University reserve the right to publish all winning essays. No entries will be published anonymously.

David O. McKay Essay Contest Submission

Contest Category(Required)
Accepted file types: pdf, Max. file size: 5 MB.


Essays are to be approximately 2,000 to 5,000 words; they will be judged on the basis of content, organization, clarity, and suitability for publication to an LDS audience. Entries must be original and unpublished. Proper MLA Formatting is necessary, including citing all outside sources in text and creating a correctly formatted Works Cited page. Winners will be notified by April.

If you have questions, contact the Center for the Study of Christian Values in Literature, 3184 JFSB. Past volumes of wining essays are on reserve in the Harold B. Lee Library and available in the BYU Bookstore.

This contest is funded by a gift from Obert C. and Grace Tanner.