Global Horizons Zach Lewsen

The NATO Council of Canada Essay Competition


Courtesy of the McGill Reporter

Interested in NATO and international politics? Ever spent a long time on an essay, and wanted others to read it? Well then, there’s a perfect opportunity for you: The NATO Council of Canada’s  2014 essay competition.

The competition is open for all high schools students in Canada. For those in grade 9 or 10, provide a 400-600 word response to one of the following questions:

1.) “The nature of the international system as it exists today means that NATO has usurped the United Nations as the single most important international organization in the international system.” Discuss.  

2.) Do you think that NATO expansion is ultimately good or bad for the Alliance?

For those in grade 11 or 12, provide a 600-900 word response to one of the following questions:

1.) NATO’s original mandate was to protect Western Europe in case of a USSR-led Communist armed invasion from the East. Now that the Cold War has ended, its primary goal has been to carve out a new role for itself in the wider international community. Do you think NATO has found its role yet? If yes, what exactly is that role?

2.) Statistics from this year’s NATO Annual Report show that while the percentage of financial contribution to NATO rose from the United States from five years ago, the percentage of financial contribution from the rest of the members has dropped. The Americans are not happy about it and are imploring the rest of the members to do their part. Do you think that NATO can survive if the United States decides to drastically cut down on its NATO contributions?

So, what’s the benefit for you?

The top three essays from both sets of questions will be expert reviewed and published on the NATO Council of Canada’s online publication.  If you’re interested in a career in academia, journalism, or public policy, having your own essay expert reviewed is an invaluable experience. Interaction with, and advice from, NATO Council of Canada editors will also help foster the paper-writing skills necessary for university coursework. In addition, having an article posted on a distinguished publication, like the NATO Council of Canada’s, will help you stand out in a job interview or university application.

The top contestant in the Grade 9-10 competition will receive a $75 Chapters gift card, with the second and third place contenders receiving a $50 and $25 gift card respectively.

The top writer in the Grade 11-12 contest will receive a $500 cash prize, which will assist with textbook purchases in university. The second place contestant will receive a $75 Chapters gift card and the third place contestant will receive a $50 Chapters gift card.

To enter the competition, simply fill out the online application form and email it, along with your essay, to by 11:59 pm on May 22. And be prepared; you might see your name in the headlines!

Zach Lewsen
Zach Lewsen completed his Honours Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science at McGill University, where his primary academic interests were Canadian politics, international relations, political economy, and judicial politics. At McGill, Zach was a Commentary Editor for the McGill Daily and a policy and advocacy intern for the Social Justice Committee of Montreal, a local non-profit. Zach hopes to attend law school or graduate public policy programs, which can help prepare him for a career relating to corporate social responsibility or immigration and labour law.