Washington Literary and Debating Society Scholarship

The Washington Literary Society and Debating Union was established in 1835 in order to pursue the study of oratory, to acquire the practice of debate, and to promote general literary culture. “The Wash” continues to meet every Thursday night at 8pm in Jefferson Hall for members to present works of literature and participate in debates.

The varied membership of the Wash values both the wit and insight of these presentations. As we are associated in the pursuit of a common, noble goal, it is our desire to also be united in the firm and lasting ties of friendship, thus proving ourselves worthy of the sentiments of our motto:

Quam Fluctus Diversi
Quam Mare Conjuncti
(Though the waves are many, the sea is one)

The scholarship is open to all undergraduate students studying in Fall 2019. Please respond to the following prompt in ~750 words. “If George Washington came back to life today, what parts of modern society and culture would most surprise him? What would he do to assimilate into modern culture? What kind of person would he be?” We are accepting both humorous and serious responses and both will be judged holistically by a group of alumni readers. We will offer 3 prizes (1st place of $500, 2nd of $300, and 3rd place $200). It is our hope that all applicants will invoke the ideals of our society; creating essays that are creative, clever and worthy to be read aloud.


The deadline for this application has passed.