The School of Humanities and Social Sciences invites currently enrolled College of Charleston students to participate in the inaugural Civil Discourse Essay Contest. The contest is sponsored by a generous gift from the Rusovich family, and a committee of faculty judges will award $1,000 to the student who writes the winning essay.

“In this hyper-partisan environment, civil discourse is more important than ever,” says Gibbs Knotts, dean of the School of Humanities and Social Sciences. “The health of our democracy depends on the ability of people from different perspectives to discuss difficult political issues. I am extremely thankful for the generous support of the Rusovich family, who provided endowed support for this essay contest. The contest is part of a larger strategy to expand civil discourse initiatives on our campus.”

Submitted essays must respond to the question, “What is civil discourse and why is it important in American society?”

Essays will be judged by the coherence of the argument, the quality of examples and evidence used, and the vividness of the writing. Interested students should submit a 750-word essay to by Nov. 15, 2022.