Student Voices Project

The Eighth Annual Student Voices Project

Ready to submit? Click here!

New this year! We’ll be co-hosting two virtual writing workshops with Friends General Conference in December for any and all eligible students who would like to participate in this year’s project. Bring your ideas and questions! We’ll go over the theme together; you’ll learn some tips for how to submit your best work; and there will be dedicated time for writing (sharing optional)! Pick the date that works best for you and then register here.

  • Sunday, December 6: 1-2:30 p.m. EDT / 12-1:30 p.m. CDT / 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. MDT / 10-11:30 a.m. PDT
  • Saturday, December 19: 4:30-6 p.m. EDT / 3:30-5 p.m. CDT / 2:30-4 p.m. MDT / 1:30-3 p.m. PDT

In January and February, we’ll also be offering some virtual office hours with FJ‘s associate editor, Gail Whiffen, who has been managing the project since its beginning in 2013.

2020-2021 Theme: Learning from 2020

Click to download PDF flyer

It’s been quite a year since the coronavirus pandemic turned the world upside down. In March 2020, everything about daily living seemed to change or shut down, including schools and meetinghouses. From remote learning and virtual worship services to Black Lives Matter protests and racial justice work to the worsening climate crisis and divisive U.S. politics, there’s a lot to process on a daily basis. Meanwhile, we’re staying home more, being more intentional about connecting with others (thank you, technology), recommitting to our faith communities in new ways, and generally missing the relative ease of life before this whole mess started. Let’s write about it.

Prompt: What have you learned about yourself and your community in the past year?

Advices and queries to consider (These are suggestions only. Students are not required to respond to all of these or any of these.):

  • What has it been like for you and your family experiencing this pandemic? Write about something that happened that stands out to you; it could be funny, or sad, or totally weird, or just describe how your daily life has changed.
  • How are you staying connected to your faith community while many meetinghouses and churches remain closed? Have you participated in virtual worship services? Write about what’s different and what has stayed the same.
  • How have recent events and protests influenced your views on and actions for racial justice? Share your observations or involvement in how your school, meeting, or faith community has responded.

Submission guidelines

  • Must be a middle or high school student (grades 6–12) at a Friends school, or a Quaker student in another educational venue (public school, non‐Friends private school, homeschool, online school, etc.) with a Quaker affiliation (monthly or yearly meeting attender or member, including young Friends gatherings and Quaker camps).
  • One submission per student, connected to the theme of “Learning from 2020.”
  • Must have an original title, and it must be typed.
  • Word count: between 300 and 1,500 words.
  • Deadline: February 15, 2021.

Submit here!

Get published in Friends Journal

A selection of the submissions will be featured in the May 2021 issue, reaching thousands of readers living on every continent. Honorees will also receive a free one-year digital subscription and will be recognized by Friends Council on Education for their work.

Check out the honorees from past years:

Email [email protected] with any questions.