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Center for California Studies
2007-2008 Student Legislative Summit participants - Town Hall Meeting student participant


Photo Contest
California Through My Eyes

Join students from around the state and participate in our most popular contest. Step behind the camera lens and capture a quintessential California picture to illustrate how you envision this state. Show us California through your eyes and you can win a cash prize.

The photo can be of a person, place or thing – the sky is the limit! The grand-prize winner will receive $150 and four runners-up will receive $100 each.

Submission Deadline: May 6, 2016


  • The photo must be your own original work
  • Each photo must have an accompanying 150-word essay and a signed permission form
  • Only one entry per student
  • Single photos only - no collages allowed
  • If your photo features another person, and their face is visible, you must obtain their permission to use the photo by having them sign this photo release form

For question, please contact Terra Thorne at 916-278-4487.

2015 Photo Contest Winners
2014 Photo Contest Winners
2013 Photo Contest Winners
2012 Photo Contest Winners
2011 Photo Contest Winners
2010 Photo Contest Winners
Past Contest Winners


Essay Contest
Political Participation by Youth

In recent years, political participation by young people has drastically declined. In the election last year, just over 8% of eligible California youth voted. Many state leaders have suggested electoral reforms to help increase participation by young people, including lowering the voting age or allowing different methods for voting. Others believe getting students involved in high school and college is the key. In this contest, we want to hear from you! Why do you think youth voter turnout is so low? Is voting important to you and your peers? What changes do you think will help increase political participation among young people? Ten winning essayists will receive roundtrip travel to the state capitol on March 2 to share their thoughts on the subject with state leaders. Postmark deadline has passed.

  • Contest open to 11th and 12th grade students in California
  • Essay must be no more than 2 pages, typed and double spaced
  • Entry form must accompany entry

Entry Guidelines
Entry Form
Teaching Resource


Editorial Cartoon Contest
A single image can convey a powerful message. That is why editorial cartoons are often used to explore complex subjects. Cartoonists use symbols, metaphors, caricatures and more to explain public opinion on current issues. In this contest, LegiSchool and KQED's The Lowdown invite you to express your opinion by creating an original editorial cartoon. Cash prizes awarded to winners and runners up. Postmark deadline has passed.

Entry Guidelines
Entry Form

Teaching Resource

Check out this year's winning cartoons here!






Page Title: Civic Education

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