Ethics and Morality Essay Contest Open to All CUNY Students

By Ilvea Lezama

The CUNY Ethics and Morality Essay contest is back and ready to start receiving applications. This contest is funded by an endowment from Dr. K York Chynn and his wife, M. Noelle Chynn, according to the contest’s website.

The essay topic this year is virtue. There are three categories, each having a different form of virtue.

The first is the four cardinal virtues created by the Greeks. These include prudence or wisdom, justice, fortitude or courage and temperance or self-control.

The second category is the three theological virtues of faith, hope and charity.

Lastly are the five constant virtues that originated in ancient China. These are ren which is benevolence or love; yi, or righteousness; li, also known as propriety, loyalty, filial piety, chastity, and respect. There is also zhi which is wisdom and xin, or integrity, honesty, and fidelity.

Students can focus their essay on one virtue in any of the categories.

The selection committee is looking for students to describe their experience practicing a virtue. Students are expected to discuss the topic in detail and must go in-depth with what personal reward they have gained from the chosen virtue and how and why they think the virtue is an important part of their life. The committee would also like to know what obstacles the writer encountered in practicing this virtue and how did they or how do they still strive to overcome difficulties.

The Asian American / Asian Research Institute will award the top three winning essays as follows; the best essay will receive the grand prize of 1,000 dollars; second place will receive $300, and third place $200. 

The winning essays will be posted online for the public to read. 

Applicants must be currently enrolled as CUNY undergraduate or graduate students. The application should have a cover page containing the essay’s title, the student’s name, the name of the CUNY college and the date. The essay should be between 1,000 and 1,500 words, Typed, 12-size Times New Roman font, 1-inch margins, and double-spaced. 

The essay can be sent to with a copy of your college ID, a completed application, and the current semester program. The email subject header should be 2022 CUNY Ethics and Morality Essay Contest Submission. 

A work cited page should be included in MLA format if students use books, articles and websites. 

The deadline for submission is Nov. 4 at 5:30 p.m. eastern standard time. 

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *