What state and national contests exist for aspiring humanities students?
The question is from a high school junior in Northern California wondering where to find internships and contests of interest involving writing on English and/or History topics?
Hi—former English major (and current writer) here! This really depends on the type of writing or topics you're interested in, because it can get pretty specialized.
1) If you're interested in something like journalism, check out any local newspapers you might have around. I'm sure they'd be thrilled to have a high school student interested in their work. Also, seek out student journalism opportunities. There are many many resources, contests, prizes, etc. for student journalism—for example, here's a list of a bunch of awards in the field: http://jea.org/wp/students/.
2) If you're interested in more creative writing, check out summer programs at nearby colleges. There are usually lots of those in creative writing, and that can give you the kind of summer experience that can help affirm whether or not you might want to pursue it in college (or something else). Also check out whether your school district or community has any kind of writing contest you could participate in. Community writing groups are also a great thing to involve yourself with, and, if you're interested in publishing, checking out any local publishing orgs or literary agencies might give you internship opportunities (though most of those will focus on college students).
Also, for creative writing, it goes without saying but working on your craft on your own time—writing short stories, novels, poetry, etc.—is more or less the most important thing you can do.
3) For History, things like quiz bowl or academic olympiads might give you the chance to study some additional material. But what I'd really recommend is looking at any local historical societies, museums, or similar spaces that might have need of volunteers or interns.
Hope that helps you get started.
I dont know scepfic ones as I live in the mid west but look into a state essay contest and there might be a history club at your school that does local and maybe state events. You could as an EC start a blog to show interest in english and do a book possibly. Hope this helps