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Update March 21, 2019:

The 2019 Public Service Recognition Week Essay Contest application period is now closed. Essays have been judged and winners have been notified. The application period for the 2020 essay contest will open in January 2020. 

 The recognition ceremony is scheduled for Monday, May 6 at 3:30 p.m. in the Legacy Room of City Hall, 901 Bagby. 

General contest information:

Seniors can earn up to $2,000 for college, gain a deeper understanding about local government and learn about the broad range of career options serving the residents of Houston.

To enter:

  • Choose a city career, put yourself in a city employee’s shoes, and write 500 words about how you would strengthen the City of Houston.
  • Research current events about the City of Houston.
  • Provide specific suggestions about how you would address issues, improve or create innovative city programs.
  • Essays about careers or entities outside the purview of the City of Houston will not be considered.   

Essays must be submitted online by midnight on Monday, March 18, 2019.  

Mayor Sylvester Turner or City Council members will recognize the winners during a ceremony in early May. At that time, the following scholarships (sponsored by Cigna) will also be awarded:

First prize: $2,000
Second prize: $1,200
Third prize: $800
Honorable Mention: $500
Honorable Mention: $500

Want to know what it takes to make it to the top 5? Read the winning 2018 essays

For more information, please contact Elise Marrion at 832-393-6132 or


Last modified on Tuesday, 07 May 2019 06:14
Contact the Essay Coordinator

If you have questions or comments please contact the
PSRW Coordinator for further details.

Submit your essay

We are accepting submissions at this time.
Submissions due March 18, 2019.