Young artists and writers are invited to participate in the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) poster, poetry and prose contest.

Illinois fifth and sixth grade writers and artists can submit to the contest, utilizing the theme of ‘Environmental Justice: A Healthy Environment for All!’ Submissions should focus on understanding environmental justice and how it relates to healthy communities. Additionally, the Illinois EPA is offering its first annual high school poster, poetry and essay contest. The theme for the high school program is ‘Environmental Justice: A Healthy Community for All – Uplifting Community Voices!’ Submissions should focus on understanding the need for environmental justice and why voices from overburdened communities are vital to the development, implementation and enforcement of environmental laws, regulations and policies.

“Illinois EPA has had tremendous response to this program for the past 35 years, and we are excited to add a new contest for high school students,” Illinois EPA Director John Kim said. “Expanding the program seems like a natural fit as we see more and more high school students with a great interest in the environment and taking steps to protect it.”

Educators are encouraged to utilize informational resources that have been shared by the Illinois EPA on the contest pages. Students can create posters or written works for the contests related to the theme’s focus. Teachers can submit up to eight entries per school to the Illinois EPA by February 1, 2023. Awards for both programs will be announced in April 2023.

For more information about elementary school submissions, click here. For more information about high school submissions, click here.