AKC National Championship Essay

USASA Juniors Program Award for AKC National Championship Invitational Qualifiers

Any junior who qualifies for the AKC National Championship Invitational in conformation or performance events has an opportunity to compete for a travel award, sponsored by the USASA Juniors Committee. The purpose of this small award is to help cover a portion of travel costs associated with attending and recognize their achievements for the past year.

Juniors who qualify must submit an essay (max. 500 words) on an assigned topic to the juniors committee. The committee will read the essays and vote on the winners based on the quality of the written essay. Essay topics will change from year to year.

If a junior qualifies for both conformation and performance, he or she may only write an essay and apply to win for one event. Performance events are all-inclusive (agility, flyball, herding, obedience, rally) and cannot be applied for individually.

A qualifying junior may win only one travel award per year. Applicants must be a USASA Junior Member during the year which they qualified (free) in order to be eligible. All qualifying wins towards attending must have been made with an Australian Shepherd, and the junior must show an Australian Shepherd in their qualifying event at the Championship.

Essays are due by email or postal mail to be received by 12:00pm on December 1 at the address below. Winners will be notified by December 10. Juniors will be divided into two categories for judging, Age 9-13 and 14-18.

2020 Essay Contest:

Thinking about your involvement in the breed, your experience as a junior handler, and future involvement in the sport of purebred dogs, write essay addressing the following: 

  1. How do you determine the health of your dogs? What considerations do you have when it comes to preparing for a show, and when considering breeding?
  2. How do you differentiate environmental versus genetic concerns? How do you educate yourself and others about these topics?
  3. What should the role of USASA be in monitoring the health and genetic condition of our breed?

Essays Due:  December 1
The essays will be judged on the following criteria:
• must include junior’s name, age and date of birth, AKC junior’s number, and qualifying event (conformation or performance)
• focus on the assigned topics
• proper essay format (Introduction, Body, Conclusion)
• proper use of grammar, spelling, punctuation
• clarity and precision
• 500 word limit

Please email your Essays to Ben Swanson at wbentons@umich.edu, or mail them to:
Ben Swanson
USASA Junior Committee Chair
2980 Hunley Drive
Ann Arbor, MI 48105

Please direct any questions to: wbentons@umich.edu

All emails will receive a confirmation reply within 48 hours. If you do not receive a message confirming receipt, please notify the Committee Chair (wbentons@umich.edu, 716-397-2007).

United States Australian Shepherd Association