Art and Essay

Peace Islands Institute Art & Essay Contest

Mission
PII helps to make New Jersey a stronger and more prosperous place by advancing the causes of peace, cross-cultural tolerance and human dignity. PII believes that establishment of dialog environments is a means to appreciate diverse opinions and eliminate the stereotypes often assigned to ‘others’. In this respect the Art and Essay Contest is very instrumental in building bridges between New Jersey communities as well as other segments of the larger society.

To contribute to the improvement of diversity, pluralism and multiculturalism in society, PII organizes the ART & ESSAY CONTEST to instill some of these values among the youth of our state and to give them a forum with various platforms in which they can express their understanding and analysis of these values.

The contest’s objective is to make our future leaders aware of social problems at an early age and to think globally. The Contest is geared towards having students in middle and high schools think about and express their own perspectives on issues of diversity as well as be involved in solving social problems in our community and the wider world.

Since its inception in 2010 PII’s Art & Essay contest for grades 6-12 has reached a prominent number of submissions each year. The board later decided to limit the submissions 5 per teacher per grade, we are exceeding over 800 submissions from various schools in NJ. Participating students are awarded prizes totaling more than $10,000.

Goals & Objectives
PII encourages all middle school and high school students from the state of NJ to participate in the Art and Essay Contest because it:
• Helps young minds define problems related to stable peace and social harmony, discuss them, and offer possible solutions from their own perspectives.
• Contributes to achieving a positive impact on society by building social skills
• Helps students improve research and writing skills that are so essential prior to college years.
• Spreads common values of mutual understanding in order to contribute to world peace.
• Focuses on coexistence through dialogue in this age of globalization.
• Reminds our future leaders the importance of love, tolerance, compassion and forgiving.
• Has the name “Diversity Art and Essay Contest.” Diversity is our richness. Diversity without dialogue causes hostility; dialogue without diversity brings distortion.

Awards
The contest consists of 2 categories and is made up of 2 participant categories:

Middle school (grades 6 through 8)
High school (grades 9 through 12)

Who can participate: Students at grades 6-12 from the State of New Jersey can enter the contest. Each student may submit only one work in each category.