2020 USNI Coast Guard Essay Contest, Deadline 30 April

USCGC Duane on North Atlantic Convoy Duty

The US Naval Institute is conducting its 2020 Coast Guard Essay Contest. Details and entry procedures are here.

The Challenge

Advance new thinking about the U.S. Coast Guard’s critical role in the new era of great power competition. No issue is too big or too narrow as long as it makes the Coast Guard stronger. This does not mean authors cannot be critical and take on conventional wisdom and current practices. In fact, we encourage you to push the “dare factor.”

Submission Guidelines

  • Word Count: 2,500 words maximum (excludes endnotes/sources).
  • Include word count on the title page but do not include your name on title page or within the essay.
  • Note: Your essay must be original and not previously published (online or in print) or being considered for publication elsewhere.

First Prize: $5,000

Second Prize: $2,500

Third Prize: $1,500

Selection Process

The Proceedings staff members will evaluate every essay and screen the top essays to a special Essay Selection Committee of at least six members who will include two members of the Naval Institute’s Editorial Board and four subject experts. All essays will be judged in the blind—i.e., the Proceedings staff members and judges will not know the authors of the essays.

Announcement of the Winners

Winners will be published in the August 2020 Proceedings.



Probably everyone who follows this blog has 2500 words of opinion about the Coast Guard.

4 thoughts on “2020 USNI Coast Guard Essay Contest, Deadline 30 April

    • I disagree. Each year officers win the contest. They certainly have opinions, many of the recycled, but it is the articles that are not very good. I call these articles, the “Coulda, Woulda, Shoulda” class. Everyone has an opinion about what could have been done, what would have been done if, and should have been done — only if they were in charge.

      • I have noticed compared to navy most of our winners are officers, navy jr. petty officers lately seem to do well. no idea on usmc side. way back in olden days, cg had it’s own magazines, though mostly propaganda. do we need our own forum where we can speak freely. other then online I do not see it. don’t get me wrong, I have been a proceedings subscriber for years and enjoy most issues, though I admit as an old sailor some of the electronics shit sails way over my head.

      • Oh, I definitely agree, there are numerous pies in the sky that get published in Proceedings. Just take a look at last year’s winners. The first place essay was good (talked about connectivity issues on cutters), but the second place essay basically said drug interdiction is useless and the Coast Guard should divert counter-drug resources to protect fish. The third place essay pushed the idea that the Coast Guard should divert a substantial amount of resources to train African navies.

        The best articles present a problem, and then offer a solution that is realistically possible with the current resources allocated to the Coast Guard. Unfortunately, that’s often not the case.

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