Clerc Center Student Contest Information

In 1857, Congress chartered a school for the deaf and blind in the nation's capital. With its success evident, seven years later Congress allocated increased funding for the establishment of a collegiate program, which today has evolved into Gallaudet University.

That pre-collegiate school, today known as the Laurent Clerc National Deaf Education Center and which operates Kendall Demonstration Elementary School (KDES) and the Model Secondary School for the Deaf (MSSD), has been witness to 150 years of extraordinary vitality and impact, both on campus and around the globe.

In commemoration of the 150th anniversary of Gallaudet University, KDES (grades 6-8) and MSSD students are invited to submit written or signed essays that examine how they have been inspired or profoundly impacted by a particular event in Gallaudet's history.

On April 8, the student winners will be recognized as part of the Sesquicentennial Charter Day campus-wide celebration.

Guidelines for submitting written or signed essays |Spanish version


1st Place:  $250 Amazon Gift Certificate
2nd Place:  $100 Amazon Gift Card
3rd Place:  Honorable Mention Certificate

1st Place:  Apple iPad
2nd Place:  $250 Bison Shop Gift Certificate
3rd Place:  $100 Bison Shop Gift Certificate


  • December 18, 2013—Contest Information Posted
  • February 17, 2014—Submission Period Opens
  • March 14, 2014—Submission Period Closes
  • March 17-28, 2014—Judging Period
  • March 30, 2014—Contest Winners Notified
  • April 8, 2014—Contest Winners Honored

Resources for Students


  • Dr. Julie Mitchiner, assistant professor, Department of Education, coordinator
  • Nanette Virnig, coordinator, After School Programs, Kendall Demonstration Elementary School
  • Jonathan Cetrano, lead teacher, English/language arts, Model Secondary School for the Deaf
  • Glenn Lockhart, member, Sesquicentennial Steering Committee and director, Public Relations and Communications, Laurent Clerc National Deaf Education Center
  • Dr. Brian Greenwald, member, Sesquicentennial Steering Committee and professor, Department of History, Philosophy, Religion, and Sociology
  • Dr. MJ Bienvenu, ex-officio chair, Sesquicentennial Steering Committee and professor, Department of ASL and Deaf Studies

Gallaudet's 150th celebration is made possible by generous support from:


Purple Logo GUAA logo


Philip L. Graham Fund  SVRS Logo

See more of our sponsors

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