Contest updates

About the Contest

For the 22nd year, the New Jersey Department of Human Services (NJDHS) invites pre-teens and teens across the state to participate in its Annual Teen Media Contest sponsored by the New Jersey Department of Human Services, Division of Family Development, focusing on parental responsibility. The statewide contest is open to all New Jersey middle school and high school students.

Student entrants are asked to create and submit a piece of original work which complements the state's ongoing advertising and community outreach campaign. For 2017, we are pleased to announce expanded entry categories. Entries will now be accepted in the following categories:

  • Hand-rawn or hand-painted artwork
  • Computer-generated or digital artwork
  • Written word (essay, poetry, composition, etc.) 
This theme encourages students to illustrate, through art or the written word, their favorite weekend memory with their parents and/or family. This theme gives students the opportunity to show the good times they have had despite any rough and challenging times they may have faced.. 

The submissions deadline for the 2017 contest is March 31, 2017. An awards ceremony for the top three winners in each school-level for each entry category is scheduled for mid-May.

An emphasis is placed on the idea that while they may not live together under one roof – both parents are responsible for enriching the life and securing the future of their child. The DHS intends to use winning student entries to promote this public awareness campaign aimed at New Jersey’s non-custodial parents.

Evaluation Criteria & Judging
Members of the New Jersey Department of Human Services with representatives from various other organizations and/or corporations in the State will serve as judges for the Teen Media Contest. Judging of artwork and the written word will be based on the following criteria (in no specific order):

    • Theme Depiction
    • Overall Appearance
    • Originality
    • Design & Execution

Winning Entry Display
Artwork and written word entries from top winners will be displayed in the New Jersey Statehouse, as well as other potential venues. Winning entries, along with select honorable mention entries, will be included in the 2018 New Jersey Child Support Calendar.

All winners receive an American Express Gift Card (1st Place: $150, 2nd Place: $100, 3rd Place: $50) and two complimentary tickets to Six Flags Great Adventure. Prize package is subject to change without notice.