Student Awards

ACA Foundation 2018 Graduate Student Essay Competitions

Welcome to the ACA Foundation 2018 Graduate Student Essay Competitions! This program is available to ACA student members and administered by the ACA Foundation. Since its inception, the ACA Foundation has been a strong supporter of graduate students in counseling. From scholarship awards for attendance at the ACA Annual Conference and Expo, to supporting the Graduate Student/New Professional Center and special education events at the annual conference, the ACA Foundation has taken an active role in helping counseling students become more involved in this exciting and demanding profession.

The ACA Foundation 2018 Graduate Student Essay Competitions, including the Future School Counselors Essay Competition (sponsored by the Roland and Dorothy Ross Trust) and the Tomorrow's Counselors Competition (sponsored by Gerald and Marianne Corey and Allen and Mary Bradford Ivey), will operate according to the following calendar:

  • The online essay submission form will go live on Monday, October 2, 2017.
  • All essays must be received by January 9, 2018 at 11:59 pm EST.
  • Award recipients will announced by early February 2018.
  • Essay competition winners will be recognized at the National Awards ceremony at the ACA 2018 Conference & Expo  in Atlanta, Georgia.

Create a new log in and submit your essay here.

Click here to review rules, eligibility, and prizes for the Essay Competition


Essay Theme Options

ACA student members wishing to participate in either essay competition must address one of the following themes:

Option A

Essay applicants for either the Tomorrow’s Counselors Competition or the Future School Counselors Competition can answer the following question:

As a professional counselor, how would you promote openness and inclusion in your work? Furthermore, how would you reach out and support under-served and underrepresented clients?

OR

Option B

Essay applicants should respond to the appropriate theme below:

Corey/Ivey Tomorrow's Counselors Competition

Strategies professional counselors can employ in addressing the current opioid crisis in America

Ross Trust / Future School Counselors Competition

The role of the professional school counselors in promoting career and college readiness with under-served and underrepresented students

Only one essay can be submitted. It is recommended that you write your essay in the program of choice and then copy and paste it into the online submission form below.  Please retain a copy of your essay in case there is a problem in transmission of your entry. Neither ACA nor the ACA Foundation is responsible if an entry does not reach us. Essay length is limited to 500 words. Entry deadline is 11:59 pm EST on January 9, 2018. 

Create a new log in and submit your essay here.

Contact Information

Questions? Email them to fburtnett@counseling.org.

Join Now

  • Learn more about your specialty—join a division
  • Maximize your Professional Development
  • Stay ahead of the educational learning curve
  • Advocate for the counseling care of tomorrow
  • Expand your networking connections
  • More Member Benefits

Latest News

ACA Weighs In on Wording Restrictions at the Centers for Disease Control

by Kathie Felix | Dec 20, 2017
According to recent press reports, officials at the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) have been told to not use the terms “diversity,” “transgender,” “evidence-based,” and “science-based,” among others, in the upcoming budget request for 2019. This prompted American Counseling Association Chief Executive Officer Richard Yep to write the Acting Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) about the directive.

HHS oversees CDC, an agency with the stated mission to save lives and to protect people from health threats. This effort is described on the CDC website as follows: “To accomplish our mission, CDC conducts critical science and provides health information that protects our nation against expensive and dangerous health threats, and responds when these arise.”

In part, the ACA letter to HHS includes the following:

“The American Counseling Association Code of Ethics honors diversity and embraces a multicultural approach in support of the worth, dignity, potential, and uniqueness of people within their social and cultural contexts. In addition, the American Counseling Association has expressly supported the dissemination of accurate information about gender identity to counteract bias that is based in ignorance or unfounded beliefs.”

ACA objects to a ban on the very language that helps government officials communicate appropriately about people who have experienced bias, and also objects to the idea of the possible exclusion of all diverse people under an agency that protects the nation’s health.

Professional counselors are required to use counseling techniques that have a scientific foundation. The American Counseling Association letter also conveys that ACA is alarmed that CDC officials must find euphemisms for the terms “science-based” and “evidence-based”—and by the implication that these are concepts to be avoided at CDC.

The ACA request asks that these and other allegedly banned words no longer be barred from budget documents—or any other communications at the Centers for Disease Control.