Start with a few good ideas, add some hard work and you could end up in San Francisco, New York City or even Cedar Rapids, Iowa, attending a communications festival or competing for a national award.

School of Communications students regularly participate in annual competitions related to their fields of study — in some cases competing for cash prizes. Below is a list of the contests, competitions and festivals available. Students should review the criteria and application requirements for each of the awards.

Contests, Competitions & Festivals for Student Entry

Open to All Majors

Photographer’s Forum Magazine
(Hosts a yearly college photo contest with a final deadline in December; magazine’s spring contest is open to all amateur photographers.)

Envision Kindness Student Photography & Film Contest
Deadline in April

AEJMC Creative Projects Competition
Deadline in April

AEJMC Best of the Web Competition
Deadline in April


Hearst Journalism Awards Program
Deadlines vary based on competition, but runs November-April

Society of Professional Journalists Mark or Excellence Awards
Deadline in January

Associated Collegiate Press Pacemaker and Individual Awards
Yearbook Pacemaker due January; Online Pacemaker due February; Newspaper Pacemaker due June; individual awards due June

College Media Association Apple Awards
Deadline in March

College Media Association Pinnacle Awards
Deadline start of June

North Carolina College Media Association Awards
Deadline in December

Columbia Scholastic Press Association Crown Awards
Deadline dates in June and October

Society of News Design
Deadline in January

Michigan State University Design Contest
Deadline in March

College News Design Contest
Deadline in March

College Broadcasters Inc. National Student Production Awards
Deadline in May

Society for Features Journalism
Deadline in March

Strategic Communications

PRSSA scholarship and leadership awards for PRSSA student members
Deadlines in spring

PRSSA Bateman Case Study competition
Students enter through school teams (must be a PRSSA member to enter)
Deadline in November.

Arthur W. Page Society Case Study Competition in Corporate Communications
The competition is announced in October and entries are due in January

PRWeek Magazine Student of the Year
Deadline in December

PSAID PSA competition
Deadline in April

American Advertising Federation Student ADDYs
Deadline for Raleigh-Durham in January

American Advertising Federation National Student Advertising Competition
Teams first compete at the district level, then advance to the semi-finals and finals. Finals are held in late May/early June.

American Advertising Federation Triangle’s Lauterborn Scholarship
Deadline in mid-April

The One Show The Young Ones Competition
Deadline in March

Communication Arts Magazine
Deadline varies based on category.

Cinema & Television Arts

FilmFreeway (film festival submissions platform)

BEA Festival of Media Arts
Deadline in December

CineAid Film Festival
Deadline in mid-July

Southern Exposure Summer Fellowship
Deadline in March

HATCH Audiovisual Arts Festival
Deadline in August

BAFTA US Student Film Award
Deadline in April

Delta Moon Student Film Festival

New England Film and Video Festival

Buffalo Niagara Film Festival
Submissions start in September and end start of January

Cedar Rapids Independent Film Festival

Chicago International Film Festival BC AA
Submissions are accepted April to July

Cleveland International Film Festival

Mile High Horror Film Festival
Submissions start in April and end in July

East Lansing Film Festival
Submissions open in March

Eerie Horror Film Festival
Submissions start in October and end in August

The Lindsey Film Festival
Submissions start in May and end in September

Spirit Quest Film Festival April
Submissions start in May and end in April

Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival
Submissions start in June and end in September

WorldFest Houston International Film and Video Festival

Colorado Film Festival
Submissions start in November and end in June

Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Student Awards
Submissions start in March and end in June

International Student Film Festival Hollywood
Submissions start in July and end in August

Sunset Film Festival
Submissions start in September and end in March

The Valley Film Festival
Submissions start in February and end in August

Women’s Voices Now Online Short Film Festival
Submissions begin in August and end in January

Mountain Film Festival

New York City Short Film Festival (NYC Shorts)

The Manhattan Short Film Festival

International Family Film Festival

New Vision Partners Interfaith Film Festival

TEEN TRUTH Film Festival

NextFrame International Student Film Festival

Philadelphia XPN Music Film Festival

Philadelphia Film Festival

Ivy Film Festival

San Diego Film Festival

La Jolla Film Festival

Cinequest Film Festival AA

San Joaquin International Film Festival

The Shorty Awards – Student Film and News Festival
Deadline in February

RiverRun International Film Festival

Yosemite International Film Festival
Deadline Jan. 20 – Sept. 15

San Francisco Frozen Film Festival
Deadline late March to May

Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting
Early Deadline in March; Regular Deadline in April; Final Deadline in May

UCLA Extension Feature Film Competition & UCLA Extension Television Writing Competitions (Spec and Pilot)
Deadline in April

The Written Image Screenwriting Prize
Deadline in May

Samuel Goldwyn Writing Award
Deadline in June

Abraham Polonsky Award In Screenwriting
Deadline in February

Abraham Polonsky Graduate Award In Critical Writing
Deadline in February

RIFF Screenplay Competition
Deadline in June

The Sloan Grant Screenwriting Program
Deadline in April

Search for America’s Newest Scriptwriter Contest

Sitcom National Writing Competition
Deadline in July

The Redstones; Fleder/Rosenberg Short Screenplay Contest
Deadline in January

David Levy Graduate Screenwriting Scholarship
Deadline in February

Michael Collyer Memorial Fellowship in Screenwriting (Collyer Fellowship)

Disney-ABC Television Writing Program
Deadline in May

College Broadcasters Inc. National Student Production Awards
Deadline in May

Communication Design

Adobe Design Achievement Awards
Deadlines in April and June

RSA Student Design Awards
Deadline in March

American Advertising Awards (formerly the ADDYs)

Raleigh-Durham specific awards
Deadline in February

Communication Arts Competition
Deadlines January-May

Print Magazine Design Competition
Deadlines throughout the year (several contest opportunities)

How Magazine Design Competitions and Contests
Deadlines April-August

International Visual Identity Awards
Deadline in September

Student Web Awards
Deadline in May

American Package Design Awards

The Dieline Awards
Deadline in February

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