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Embassy of the Republic of Korea Essay Contest

For more than 60 years, the Korea-U.S. Alliance has been the linchpin of peace and stability in Northeast Asia. Forged in our common sacrifice of the Korean War, the Korea-U.S. partnership has evolved to encompass cooperation on the most intractable social and economic challenges of our time. 

What was once a security partnership, dedicated to maintaining peace on the Korean Peninsula, now involves cooperation around the world to mitigate global climate change and environmental degradation, fight global poverty, confront global terrorism, and promote cyber-security. Our security partnership has transformed into a “Global Partnership.”

Our mutual interest in democracy, free markets, and human rights is what brings our two countries together; however, it is the close personal ties between Koreans and Americans that give our Alliance its true strength. There are 28,500 U.S. servicemen and servicewomen in Korea; many businesspeople travel back and forth, taking advantage of the Korea-U.S. Free Trade Agreement; 70,000 Korean students study in American Universities; many Americans teach English in Korea; and of course, there are the vibrant Korean-American communities across the United States. These are the people that make up the backbone of our enduring Alliance.

For Koreans, a 60th anniversary has a special meaning: it marks the end of one 60-year cycle of life and the beginning of a new phase. We celebrated the 60th anniversary of the ROK-U.S. Alliance last year; this year therefore marks the first year of a new 60-year cycle of our Alliance. 

To commemorate this occasion, the Embassy of the Republic of Korea is pleased to announce that it is sponsoring an essay contest on topical issues related to the Korea-United States relationship. The contest is open to undergraduate and graduate (i.e., one or two-year programs only) students attending an institution in Washington, D.C, Virginia, or Maryland. The grand prize winner will be awarded $3,000; two runners-up will receive $2,000 each; and three third-place winners will receive $1,000 each. 

Eligible, interested students should apply for the contest by writing an essay of no longer than 1,500 words in English on any topic of their choice related to Korea-U.S. relations.

Terms, Formatting, and Submissions:


- All essays must have a cover page. The cover page must include (a) essay title, (b) author’s full name, (c) school affiliation, (d) author’s email address, (e) academic advisor’s name and contact information.

- The essay should be no more than 1,500 words in length (inclusive of reference matter), double spaced, using 12 point Times New Roman font.

- Page numbers should be centered at the bottom of each page.

- If applicable, citations should be in MLA format or a bibliography should be attached at the end of the essay

- Author’s identification should only be shown on the cover page

- All essays must be submitted by October 19, 2014 by email to korea.embassy.essay2014@gmail.com

- Essays will be judged on their originality, accuracy, relevance, and coherence by external and internal review committees. Essays that are formatted incorrectly may be disqualified.

- All entries must be original works. They may not have been previously published in professional media. All the entries shall be considered to be the property of the Embassy which reserves the right of publication

- Winners will be announced on the Embassy’s website, http://usa.mofa.go.kr/, by the end of November.


For any questions related to the essay contest, please contact the Embassy at korea.embassy.essay2014@gmail.com.