NewsBrands launch new Student Writing Competition

Secondary school students are being asked to write about their experience of the coronavirus crisis

The winning work will be published in national and local media plus a €200 gift voucher for each winning student!



NewsBrands Ireland are extending their hugely successful Press Pass student journalism competition by asking students to submit a piece of journalism concerning the Coronavirus and the impact it is having.

The entry can be either a feature article or an opinion piece.

As an example the work could focus on:

Positive ways your community and family are dealing with the impact of the coronavirus 

The ethical issues this pandemic has raised — for each of us personally, for our communities and for us all as global citizens? What does it mean to be a “good citizen” in the context of this outbreak?

What weaknesses — and what strengths — is coronavirus exposing in our society?

Fake news – staying informed is more important than ever but how do we know the information we are reading is true? Should we believe that viral text message or social media post that says we will run out of food or the country is going into immediate lockdown? 

Options are not restricted to the above suggestions, we welcome any original thoughts from students. Writing and documenting major global and personal events can play an important role in keeping young people mentally strong and healthy during this worrying time.  Sometimes it’s hard for teenagers to express how they feel to parents, friends, and classmates. Writing gives a student an outlet for emotions that may otherwise be trapped and may be lead to anxiety. 

To find out how to write a great News Feature or Opinion Piece, please check out the advice here.

Features Advice

Opinion Advice

Examples of award winning Opinion and Feature articles can be read here:

Entry is open to secondary school students There are three categories in this competition

Junior – 1st and 2nd year

Intermediate – 3rd and 4th year

Senior – 5th and 6th year

Advice from the judges:

All work must be original with any quotes used cited to the source

Remember this piece will be published in national media so do not write anything you would not like see in print

Before you write, read feature articles and opinion pieces in the newspaper at home or on a news website. Or check out the award winning articles mentioned above

Please watch your punctuation and spelling , proof and re-proof your article before you send it to us!

Maximum word count is 500 words per article

The winning articles will be published in a selection of national and local newspapers and news websites and the winning students will each win a €200 gift voucher.


For further details, please contact Lisa Buckley, NewsBrands Ireland