Events & News
5th Annual #HeforShe Gender Equity Essay Contest

5th Annual #HeforShe Gender Equity Essay Contest

Date: Friday, November 29, 2019

The St. Jerome’s University HeForShe Committee is proud to announce the fifth annual SJU #HeforShe Gender Equity Essay Contest. This essay contest gives students an opportunity to share their voice and vision as to how we can meet the goals of the #HeforShe movement to promote gender equity. Students currently registered at St. Jerome’s University (SJU) or University of Waterloo undergraduate students who have written their entry for a SJU course in any year or discipline, are welcome to submit essays relevant to that topic for a chance to win a First Place prize of $500 or the $250 Runner-up prize.


#HeforShe is part of an initiative launched in 2015 by UN Women to advance gender equity and women’s empowerment. St. Jerome’s University and the University of Waterloo have joined this initiative and pledged to address issues of gender equity and serve as catalysts for change.  Students are encouraged to submit a paper written for a course that is relevant to the topic, or write an independent paper on gender equity. Topics that may help guide what constitutes a relevant essay for this contest include:


  • Gender and popular culture
  • Women in STEM
  • How men and women are harmed by sexism
  • Digital inequity
  • Intersectional inequity/equity
  • What contribution can men and women make toward gender equity
  • Gender and literature
  • Historical areas and movements (e.g. early modern period, suffragettes, Black feminist movement)
  • Technofeminism or digital feminism
  • Women and work
  • Gender and language
  • Gender equity and religion


If you are unsure if your topic qualifies, please consult St. Jerome’s University’s HeForShe essay contest committee member Norm Klassen for more information.


Please review the following submission guidelines carefully before entering the contest on or before the May 1, 2020 submission deadline:

  1. Submissions may be made directly by the student essayist or, with the permission of the student, nominated by a professor or course instructor.
  2. This paper must have been written by
    1. a student currently registered at St. Jerome’s University for any SJU or UW course, or
    2. a University of Waterloo undergraduate student for an SJU course in which they are currently  enrolled.

                “Currently registered” and “currently enrolled” mean registered and/or enrolled in Spring 2019 and/or Fall 2019
                 and/or Winter 2020.

  1. The student can be registered in any year or discipline.
  2. The essay topic and content must relevant to the #HeforShe goals.
  3. Students may submit only one essay for consideration in any given academic year.
  4. Papers must have been written in the Spring or Fall 2019 or Winter 2020 semesters.
  5. The student should not have graduated before September 1, 2019.
  6. Essays written for courses may be revised prior to submission.
  7. Senior’s honours essays and book reviews will not be accepted.
  8. Papers must use a recognized academic style (e.g. APA, Chicago, or MLA format) and be no more than 15 pages in length including bibliography.
  9. Papers must be submitted electronically to this address: Papers will be anonymized before being circulated to the adjudication committee.
  10. The student’s UW ID number only should appear on the front page of the essay and as a footer  on each page.
  11. The student’s name, course number and professor’s name should appear only on the entry form—NOT on the essay itself.
  12. Entries failing to meet these guidelines will not be considered.


Electronic submissions are preferred, but hard copy submissions will also be accepted if placed in the “HeforShe” drop box located outside the Library in the St. Jerome’s University Classrooms and Library Building (SJ1). Electronic submissions should be emailed to as a .doc or .docx only (and not PDF).


 All entries must be received no later than May 1st, 2020.


 Register using the entry form and place your completed form and essay in the drop box located on the first floor of Sweeney Hall OR email (preferred) to by May 1st, 2020.


The Selection Committee reserves the right to forego the presentation of the awards if no worthy   recipient is identified.

To find out more about this important initiative, please use the following links:

UN Women Press Release


University of Waterloo’s HeforShe


he4she Logo
Media Folder: 


Events & News