FBI Norfolk
Community Outreach Specialist Vanessa Torres
(757) 455-0100
April 1, 2015

Norfolk FBI and Partners Host Essay Contest for All Local High Schools

The Norfolk Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), in partnership with the Chesapeake Police Department and the Norfolk Chapter of the Citizens Academy Alumni Association, will sponsor an essay contest for high-school students in Hampton Roads, Virginia. Essay contest winners will be announced at an upcoming event titled Leap of Faith, an interfaith and law enforcement program designed to promote respect and mutual understanding among all faiths, cultures, and law enforcement through education, activities, and other events.

The objectives of the interfaith and law enforcement dialogue include:

  1. Educating our city about the mission and priorities of our respective law enforcement agencies
  2. Building understanding to overcome/prevent stereotypes of religions and law enforcement
  3. Educating participants to be creative, independent thinkers and encouraging collaboration and teamwork in our neighborhoods and workplaces
  4. Promoting diversity and inclusion

The essay contest is an opportunity for local high school students to express their views on law enforcement collaboration with people of all faiths/ cultures. Students are requested to use the following guidelines for their entries.

Essay Subject:

Students are asked to write an original and creative essay that demonstrates how the power of working together around shared values can impact neighborhoods. Students should elaborate on ways people of all faiths can collaborate with law enforcement to improve their community. The maximum word count is 800 with a minimum of 500.

The essay must include a cover sheet with the essay title, student’s full name, student’s phone number, student’s home address, name of high school, and student’s e-mail address.

Entry Dates, Deadlines, and Winner Notification:

  • This contest will open on March 2, 2015 and close at midnight on April 24, 2015.
  • Entries must be received by 11:59 p.m. on April 24, 2015 if e-mailing OR postmarked by April 24, 2015 if sending in the mail.
  • Winners will be announced at the Leap of Faith Interfaith/Law Enforcement Event on May 5, 2015 (6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.) at the Chesapeake Conference Center, 700 Conference Center Drive, Chesapeake, Virginia 23320. 

Eligibility and Restrictions:

  • Contestants must be between the ages of 15 and 18 by the contest deadline (April 24, 2015).
  • Only one entry per contestant will be accepted.
  • Essays must be the original work of the student.
  • Contestants must be residents of Hampton Roads, Virginia.
  • Children of FBI employees and children of Chesapeake Police Department employees are not eligible to participate.

Entries can be e-mailed to vanessa.torres@ic.fbi.gov or mailed to:

Norfolk FBI
Community Outreach Essay Contest
509 Resource Row
Chesapeake, VA 23320

A panel will review the essays and will select the winners based on the following elements:

  • Content and relevance to essay subject
  • Creativity
  • Grammar, spelling, and punctuation


Neither parents nor youth participants may contact the Norfolk FBI, Chesapeake Police Department, or the judges for information related to the essay contest. Doing so will result in participant’s immediate disqualification from this contest.