HARTFORD – Ahead of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) on Thursday announced the launch of his second annual ‘Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Essay Challenge.’ Murphy encourages elementary, middle, and high school students from across Connecticut to honor the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., by submitting essays that reflect on Dr. King’s dream and their own aspirations.

“Racism, homophobia, and prejudice are tragically alive and well in America today,” said Murphy. “I’m launching the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. essay challenge for the second year to encourage young people all over Connecticut to commit to making Dr. King’s dream for equality – no matter your skin color, national origin, religion, or sexual orientation – a reality. Dr. King’s leadership united millions of Americans, and his legacy will live on forever because of it.”

Full guidelines of Murphy’s ‘Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Essay Challenge’ are below:

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday was designated as a federal holiday in 1983. The first Martin Luther King Jr. Day was celebrated in 1986. Since that time, on the third Monday of each January, we celebrate the life and dream of Dr. King, the impact he made on our nation, and the work that remains to be done to fulfill his vision. For this essay, students should reflect on what Dr. King’s dream was and what he would think about his dream today. Students should further answer what their own dream is and how it relates to the work of Dr. King. The deadline for submission is January 10, 2018. Essays should be no more than 500 words for high school students (grades 9-12), 300 words for middle school students (grades 6-8), and 100-200 for elementary school students (grades K-5). Pictures are optional for elementary school submissions. Students should submit their essays online here.