BELLEVILLE, Ill. - Metro East Pride of Southwestern Illinois (MEPSI), organizers of the annual Metro East LGBTQIA Pride celebration in downtown Belleville, have launched their first scholarship essay contest.

The deadline for the scholarship is May 6, 2016. Two winning essays will be selected and the lucky students will receive a $250 scholarship to their attending colleges.

Applicants are asked to answer the following question: Tell us how LGBTQIA characters (not actors) in TV and movies have affected the way you view yourself and the gay community. Also describe a LGBTQIA character (not actor) who has had a positive impact on your life.

Applications with the qualifying essay must be emailed in .pdf format by May 6, 2016 to metroeastpride "at"


Eligibility and Guidelines are as follows: Must be a resident of Illinois; Applications must be submitted in Times New Roman 12 pt. font; Essay length is a minimum of two pages, double-spaced, with cover letter; Applicants must be at least 17 years of age; Applicants should provide full name, address, contact phone number and email in cover letter; MEPSI Board members and family members are not eligible.


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