Walter S. and Syrena M. Howell Essay Contest

Students wishing to apply for this scholarship and prize must write an essay. The student who writes the best essay in 1,500-2,500 words will be awarded the ($3,000) scholarship and ($1,000) prize. Judges may also select additional worthy essays for recognition and scholarships.

The goal of the Howell Essay Scholarship is to encourage student to analyze of propaganda, as defined as, “the use of unproved and/or unverifiable assumptions in a report or statement of allegations reflecting the view and interests of its advocates.”

This contest and scholarship were established by Grant Howell, former editor of The Daily (Royal Oak) Tribune, in memory of his parents, Walter and Syrena Howell.

This scholarship and award is given annually to a ComArtSci undergraduate student who writes the best essay examining media bias, a subject of deep concern to Howell. He was a feisty newsman, in the best sense of the word, always wanting his staff and his newspaper to cover the news fairly, objectively and honestly.

2023 Essay Topic
Twelve people are responsible for almost two-thirds of the anti‑vaccine content on social media platforms, according to the Center for Countering Digital Hate. It traced 65% of 812,000 misleading vaccine messages posted between February and March to this small group of anti-vaxxers. Knowing their identities, what should the news media do to alert consumers and reduce these misleading messages?

Essay Guidelines
Your essay should be 1,500–2,500 words and must be focused on this year’s topic. Consideration will be given to analyses with critical thinking and research, including — but not limited to — web searches, interviews with experts on the subject and links to examples. Sources must be properly cited. Essay may be presented in a written or multimedia form. Multimedia essays should include scripts for any video content. Students may also produce multimedia elements as a supplement to a written essay.

Your essay should be in a Word document (.doc or .docx). Do NOT include your name or any other identifying information in your essay file.

Eligibility Requirements
Undergraduate MSU students with majors in the College of Communication Arts and Sciences are eligible. Those graduating in May are not eligible. Scholarships are issued for the upcoming fall semester.

Questions
Questions can be directed to Joe Grimm at jgrimm@msu.edu.

Award
$4,000
Deadline
01/22/2023
Supplemental Questions
  1. Month and year you expect to graduate from MSU
  2. Upload your essay here (1,500-2,500 words). Do NOT include your name or other identifying information in your essay file. Please submit your essay as a Word file (.doc or .docx). 2023 Howell Essay Topic: Twelve people are responsible for almost two-thirds of the anti‑vaccine content on social media platforms, according to the Center for Countering Digital Hate. It traced 65% of 812,000 misleading vaccine messages posted between February and March to this small group of anti-vaxxers. Knowing their identities, what should the news media do to alert consumers and reduce these misleading messages?
  3. Howell Essay Multimedia Elements: If you have multimedia elements to include with your essay, enter a URL to a central location where the material can be accessed, such as a portfolio website, YouTube channel and/or shared document/folder (Google Drive, Microsoft OneDrive, etc.). Multimedia elements are not required.
  4. Use of Anti-Plagiarism Software to Review Howell Essay Entries: Consistent with MSU’s efforts to enhance student learning, foster honesty, and maintain integrity in our academic processes, essay reviewers may use a tool called Turnitin to compare an essay submission with multiple sources. The tool compares each submitted essay with an extensive database of prior publications and papers, providing links to possible matches and a “similarity score.” The tool does not determine whether plagiarism has occurred or not. Instead, reviewers must make a complete assessment and judge the originality of the submitted work. All submissions to this contest may be checked using this tool. Submissions will not be retained in the repository hosted by Turnitin beyond the initial comparison.
  5. Howell Essay Statement of Originality: Please read and indicate