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Articles / Paying for College / Sticking to Your Scholarship Search

Sticking to Your Scholarship Search

Dave Berry
Written by Dave Berry | Nov. 16, 2017

I love creating these hilarious, creative titles for my blog posts! The secret behind today's hilarity is that I'm going to be talking about the 18th Annual Duck brand Stuck at Prom Scholarship Contest.

Getting money for college may be harder than actually getting through college. The world of college scholarships is both vast and frustrating. The really big scholarships -- Coca-Cola, Gates Millennium, Buick Achievers, etc. -- are so globally competitive that your chances for success are about the same as winning the lottery, maybe less.

So, the hunt for cash might be better focused on the less obvious programs, where the competitive numbers are more in your favor. I've written about these so-called "obscure" scholarships before. If you would like to see what some of these are, such as awards for left-handers or redheads, just use the little search box up top and type in the word "scholarships."

Today, though, I'm going to focus on one of my favorite "semi"-obscure scholarships because the requirements to win can be so much fun and provide an outlet for true creativity. Here's the deal, as explained, in part, by information from stuckatprom.com.

... "November is National Scholarship Month. For creative students looking for a fun, quirky alternative to the traditional essay-based scholarship submission, this may be it … the 18th Annual Duck brand Stuck at Prom Scholarship Contest.

By fashioning prom attire entirely out of Duck Tape, students have a chance to win one of two $10,000 Grand Prizes (one for best tux and one for best dress), totaling $20,000 in scholarship dollars." ...

Scholarship searchers -- take note:

Important Dates:

· Submission Period: April 2 through June 1, 2018

· Judges Voting Period: June 2 through June 8, 2018

· Finalists Announced: June 14, 2018

· Public Voting Period: June 14 through June 25, 2018

· Grand Prize Winners Announced: July 9

Some highlights from the press release:


"Duck® Brand Rolls out Updates to the 18th Annual Stuck at Prom® Scholarship Contest to Embrace Prom Trends

Two Individual Entrants Now Have a Shot at $20,000 in Grand Prizes

AVON, Ohio – The fads of prom are ever-changing – from grand ball gowns and traditional black tuxes to two-piece dresses and elaborately patterned jackets. And that's just the fashion. These days, teens are watching online DIY make-up tutorials, rather than heading to a beauty salon; renting jewelry and accessories rather than buying; and even attending prom solo instead of as a couple.

Now in its 18th year, the Duck® brand Stuck at Prom® Scholarship Contest is breaking from previous traditions and embracing the ebb and flow of these trends. For the first time ever, creative makers can enter their unique promwear designs to win one of two coveted $10,000 Grand Prizes as individuals (rather than as a couple). There will be one Grand Prize winner in the Dress Category and one in the Tux Category, totaling $20,000.

“For nearly two decades, our Grand Prize winners wowed us with their craftsmanship, attention to detail and wild imaginations. They truly define what it means to be a 'maker,' someone who breaks the mold to create something the world has never seen before," said Ashley Luke, category manager at ShurTech Brands, LLC, the company that markets the Duck® brand. “Now that individual entrants have a chance at the top prize, this opens the door for even more students to enter Stuck at Prom, and we're eager to witness the next generation of designers, artists and innovators."

Since 2001, the contest has inspired the creativity and uniqueness of students all across the U.S and Canada. Throughout the years, Stuck at Prom® judges, and the public, have awarded creative high school students with more than half a million dollars in scholarships. Students have made countless never-seen-before designs and styles from the hundreds of Duck Tape® colors and prints available, giving these makers the opportunity to showcase their talents and highlight their individuality in new and exciting ways. ...

... Contest judges responsible for selecting the five finalists in each Category will review all submissions based equally on creativity, workmanship, originality, use of color and design, and the accessories that were created using Duck Tape®. The Grand Prize Dress winner and the Grand Prize Tux winner, selected by public vote, will each receive a scholarship prize of $10,000, totaling $20,000. The remaining eight runners up will receive a $100 Duck Tape® prize pack.

For additional details on Stuck at Prom®, visit StuckAtProm.com."


I've been a lifelong fan of "duck" tape. If my memory serves me adequately -- that's a stretch these days -- the brand name "Duck Tape" is an evolution of the original purpose of the tape, which was (and still is) used as a kind of temporary (which usually turns out to be permanent) repair for punctured, leaking air ducts or similar convection-facilitating assemblies. Thus, the technically proper designation: duct tape.

Marketing genius, being what it is, ceased upon the similarity of the words "duct" and "duck," and Duck Tape, a trademarked brand, was born. Of course people sometimes enjoy seeing ducks (although think of those annoying AFLAC commercials), plus it's much easier to say "duck" than it is to say the harder-to-enunciate "duct." So, Duck Tape was a no-brainer.

I've made a career out of holding my life's stuff together with duct tape. There have been volumes written about the infinite uses for the shiny, massively sticky product, produced by any number of manufacturers across the world (yes, China, I'm talking about you), but there is only one Duck Tape!

So, this scholarship opportunity offers those of you who are both talented designers and in need of what could be some significant college cash a chance to man your plan. If you need some inspiration to get started, just do a search for duct tape wardrobe. And if you are sufficiently motivated to enter the Stuck at Prom scholarship sweepstakes, be sure to ... wait for it ...

adhere to the rules! Hahaha.


Be sure to check out all my articles at College Confidential.

Written by

Dave Berry

Dave Berry

Dave is co-founder of College Confidential and College Karma Consulting, co-author of America's Elite Colleges: The Smart Buyer's Guide to the Ivy League and Other Top Schools, and has over 30 years of experience helping high schoolers gain admission to Ivy League and other ultra-selective schools. He is an expert in the areas application strategies, stats evaluation, college matching, student profile marketing, essays, personality and temperament assessments and web-based admissions counseling. Dave is a graduate of The Pennsylvania State University and has won national awards for his writing on higher education issues, marketing campaigns and communications programs. He brings this expertise to the discipline of college admissions and his role as a student advocate. His College Quest newspaper page won the Newspaper Association of America's Program Excellence Award, the Pennsylvania Newspaper Publisher's Association Newspapers in Education Award, the Thomson Newspapers President's Award for Marketing Excellence and the Inland Press Association-University of Kentucky School of Journalism and Mass Communications Inland Innovation Award for the Best New Page. His pioneering journalism program for teenagers, PRO-TEENS, also received national media attention. In addition, Dave won the Newspaper Association of America's Program Excellence Award for Celebrate Diversity!, a program teaching junior high school students about issues of tolerance. His College Knowledge question-and-answer columns have been published in newspapers throughout the United States. Dave loves Corvettes, classical music, computers, and miniature dachshunds. He and his wife Sharon have a daughter, son and four grandchildren.

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