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World War II Veteran of the 101st Airborne Division Jim "Pee Wee" Martin (center, top row) with his comrades in the Austrian Alps.

World War II Veteran of the 101st Airborne Division Jim “Pee Wee” Martin (center, top row) with his comrades in the Austrian Alps.

Veterans Video History Contest

The Veterans Video History Contest will be holding its 3rd annual contest this summer and fall! We encourage high school students to take part in the mission of preserving the legacy of America’s heroes. Students are encouraged to collect oral histories from veterans, so that these timeless stories of valor and sacrifice are never forgotten.

Students may interview veterans from across generations, and particularly if possible, those with whom our time is limited: our elder veterans of World War II and Korea. By using media to mobilize youth, the Veterans Video History Contest will connect generations and honor the service of our nation’s heroes, inspiring students to take a greater interest in our nation’s history and freedoms.

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Read personal testimonies from students, parents, and teachers.

ABOUT THE CONTEST

The contest connects students with veterans and gives them the opportunity to record first-hand accounts of military history. The process is simple:

  • Find a Veteran in your community who has a story
  • Film a 30 minute (or longer) oral history with a military veteran focusing on their service
  • Edit together a 3-5 minute video essay and transfer it to a disc
  • Enter submission by mailing the video essay disc to American Veterans Center to be judged
  • Library of Congress (optional): mail unedited interview on a disc along with required paperwork to the Library of Congress

Check out our Student Resources available here.

OFFICIAL RULES

Eligibility: NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN IN THE VETERANS VIDEO HISTORY CONTEST. Open to legal residents of the 50 US states, territories & Washington DC, who are between 13 & 18 years of age & currently enrolled in a public or private junior high or high school, or home-schooled with an accredited & recognized home-schooling program. A minor should have a parent’s or legal guardian’s permission to enter. Void where prohibited.

Criteria used to judge videos:

  • A compelling story of personal sacrifice
  • Coverage of any of these virtues: courage, perseverance, integrity, loyalty, honor, respect, leadership, humility, forgiveness, or overcoming prejudice.
  • Content to be accurate and informative
  • Innovative and unique approaches to tell the story creatively
  • Quality of production (clarity of audio, lighting, visual aesthetics, cinematography, music and sound effects appropriate to actions on the screen)
  • Quality of editing (continuity, pace to prevent boredom or negative adaptation, appropriate graphics)

PRIZES
The following cash prizes will be awarded –
– 1st Prize: $1,000
– 2nd Prize: $500
– 3rd Prize: $350
– 4th Prize: $250

In addition, the first prize winner will receive an all-expenses paid trip to Washington D.C. for the American Veterans Center Annual Memorial Day Parade. The award presentation will be made at that time.
DATES
Submissions open June 20, 2016. All submissions must be postmarked no later than December 7, 2016. American Veterans Center will announce the winners early 2017.
Mail submissions to:

Veterans Video History Contest
American Veterans Center
1100 North Glebe Road, Suite 910
Arlington, VA 22201

SPONSORS: American Veterans Center & Worthington Foundation, Inc.
For any additional questions regarding the Veterans Video History Contest, please call 703-302-1012 ext. 228 or email mmaggi@avcmail.com.

EDUCATOR RESOURCES

Educators, your help is essential in making the Veterans Video History Contest a success. While the contest relies on students’ video submissions, you can spread the word about the contest and guide students through the process. Normally it takes students 8-12 hours to complete the project. Here are some suggestions and resources to help you get students involved in preserving the memories of this important era: Check out our Educators Resources page.

Sponsors: American Veterans Center & Worthington Foundation, Inc.

For any additional questions regarding the Veterans Video History Contest, please call 703-302-1012 ext. 228.

2015 Grand Prize Winner Evan Warner