Men of the 442nd RCT in formation in Bruyeres, France for the Presidential Unit Citation in November 1944. (National Archives)

Go For Broke National Education Center (GFBNEC) is pleased to announce its annual student contest that focuses on the relevance and impact of the Japanese American World War II veterans.

The contest is open to high school (grades 9-12) and college (undergraduate and graduate) students. Cash prizes totaling $7,000 will be awarded to the top 12 winners. The first-place student in each category will receive $1,000 in addition to two complimentary tickets to attend GFBNEC’s 19th annual Evening of Aloha Gala Dinner and Auction on Aug. 29 at the Westin Bonaventure Hotel & Suites in Downtown Los Angeles.

Students may write an essay or poem on one of two topics:

• This year marks the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II, yet the Japanese American WWII veteran experience is still relevant to our society today. Explore one of the ways this is true.

• Research one Japanese American WWII soldier and highlight elements of the experience that are most meaningful to you.

Essays and poems must be emailed to

This is the eighth year that GFBNEC has encouraged young people to explore their relationship to the Japanese American veteran story. Last year, GFBNEC received entries from approximately 45 high schools and 20 universities from all over the country.

Essays should consist of 300 to 500 words, and poems should not be longer than three typed pages. All entries should be original compositions. A panel of educators has been specially selected to serve as judges. The winners will be presented in a booklet at the Evening of Aloha Gala Dinner and Auction, and will be available on GFBNEC’s website,

All submissions are due by Sunday, June 28. Winners will be notified by July 17.

Go For Broke National Education Center (GFBNEC) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit foundation that educates the public on the valor of Japanese American veterans of WWII and their contributions to democracy. Its goal is to inspire new generations to embody the Nisei veterans’ core values of courage, sacrifice, equality, humility and patriotism. Founded in 1989, GFBNEC maintains the Go For Broke Monument and the interactive “Defining Courage” exhibition in downtown Los Angeles, as well as extensive oral histories and archives, education and training programs, and other initiatives.

Note from Go For Broke: For the safety of our patrons and our staff, GFBNEC’s “Defining Courage” exhibition will be temporarily closed from March 12-31. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause. In the interim, all online purchases made from will now be processed and shipped out weekly on Thursdays and Fridays. We will continue to monitor closely and provide updates, and we thank you for your patience and support.



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