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Essay Competition

Rosemont College undergraduate students are invited to submit essays exploring issues of bioethical significance. A $300 cash prize will be awarded to the author of the winning submission.
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Competition Description

Essays must address a topic in bioethics. Essays concerning ethics and emerging medical technologies are encouraged, as this is the theme of the spring   symposium. Possible topics include, but are not limited to:
  • New technologies (gene editing, robotic surgery, human enhancement)
  • Research on vulnerable groups (children, prisoners, the mentally ill, the terminally ill)
  • Organ donation (selling organs, living organ donors, organ donation and lifestyle choices)
  • Allocation of scarce resources (organs, vaccines, ICU beds, experimental therapies, etc.)
  • Social justice in health (ethical distribution of health care, personal responsibility for health, right to health care, social determinants of health) 
  • Global health (research in developing countries, responsibilities for poverty-related illnesses, moral duties to improve health in developing countries)
  • Prenatal genetic testing 
  • Ethics at the end of life (withdrawing and withholding life-sustaining treatment, physician assisted death, organ retrieval and donation)
  • Essays should be framed through the lens of an ethical theory, value, or principle. For resources on ethical frameworks, see here
  • Essays will be judged by members of the Institute’s Internal Advisory Board. The decision of the committee is final.
  • Essays will be judged based on clarity, insight, focus, originality, balanced logical argumentation, and quality of analysis. 
  • Winning authors must be present at the spring symposium on Friday, April 21, 2017 to be acknowledged and receive their award.


  • All undergraduate students at Rosemont College registered during the spring semester in which the competition is held are eligible, including those who will be studying abroad.

Submission Guidelines

  • Submissions must be between 2,000 and 2,500 words (approximately 8-10 double-spaced pages. 
  • Submissions must be typed in 12-point font, double-spaced with 1” margins, and numbered pages. Title and reference pages are not included in the numbering.
  • The title page must include only the essay title. The author’s name should not appear anywhere in the essay.
  • Submissions must include a reference page and proper in-text source documentation (MLA, APA, or Chicago styles).
  • Submissions derived from current or past coursework are acceptable as long as they are approved by the faculty member for whom the work was originally submitted. It is the student’s responsibility to obtain and document the faculty member’s approval of the submission.
  • Students are to submit their papers to Dr. Alan Preti by March 24, 2017 via e-mail at No late submissions will be accepted.
  • For additional information, contact Dr. Alan A. Preti, Director, Institute for Ethical Leadership and Social Responsibility at or 610-527-0200 ext. 2345