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School of Coastal Resilience

Everyday Heroes Project

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About the Contest:

The Mississippi Everyday Heroisms Project seeks to nurture and gather narratives about Southern Mississippi heroism and resilience from students, faculty, and community members and then house them permanently on the USM website.  This student and community outreach program will cultivate and document the heroisms of everyday life in our region.

The associated writing contest is for USM students, who will submit narratives of resilience and regional true stories about everyday heroism. The narratives will be 600-1000 words, and the plan is ultimately to archive them on a perpetual, dedicated webpage. The student writing contest will facilitate the development of this online archive to be called The Mississippi Everyday Heroisms Project, and ideally, these narratives could accrue in perpetuity as a representation of Mississippi Coastal Resilience.

The Mississippi Everyday Heroes Project Writing Contest is funded by Academic Affairs at the University of Southern Mississippi Gulf Coast.


Writing Awards:

  • First Prize: $200
  • Second Prize: $150
  • Third Prise:  $100
  • Honorable Mention:  $75

Eligibility: The Mississippi Everyday Heroes Project Writing Contest is open to all current undergraduate students at the University of Southern Mississippi. All entries must be original works. Submissions should not have been previously published. 

Contest Rules:

  1. Submission entries should be nonfiction prose works, i.e. narratives of actual events.
  2. Submission entries should be between 600 and 1000 words.
  3. Submission entries should engage the theme of everyday heroism or resilience in the face of adversity, and entries should engage the region of Southern Mississippi.
  4. All entries must be original works.
  5. All entries must be typed prose narratives attached in .doc or .pdf format sent in an email to Damon.FrankeFREEMississippi.
  6. Include a cover letter listing your name, address, USM student ID number, email address, telephone number, and the title of your submission.
  7. Do not include your name on the manuscript itself.
  8. All entries must be submitted by May 9th, 2022 at 11:59 p.m., Central Standard Time (CST).
  9. Winners will be notified by mid-May and invited to read their work at an Awards Ceremony TBA. 
  10. A panel of three independent judges will select winners from a group of finalists chosen by the organizer of the project. All manuscripts, whether selected as finalists or not, will be considered for publication when the Mississippi Everyday Heroes Project goes online.


Damon Franke, Associate Professor
School of Coastal Resilience
University of Southern Mississippi Gulf Coast
Long Beach, MS 39560

Email: Damon.FrankeFREEMississippi%C2%A0

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