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Kavita Singh PPE Essay Competition

Kavita Singh, St. Hugh’s Alumna, is a pioneer in India’s college admissions space. As CEO of Futureworks, she’s coached 10,000+ students, sits on several scholarship committees, created breakthrough education programs and helped established tertiary educational institutions to widen access.


2024 Poster

The Principal and Fellows of St Hugh’s College are pleased to be offering a prize, worth up to £500, for the best essays submitted by a pupil who, at the closing date, has been in the Sixth Form of a state-funded school or college for a period of not more than two years. Candidates are required to write an essay in response to one of these three questions:


Can you be certain of anything other than what goes on inside your mind? If not, what makes you think that there is anything else?


“Democracy will not help us solve the issues facing the world today.” Discuss.


The most important consequence of introducing a universal basic income would be the effect on labour supply. Do you agree or disagree? Argue for your standpoint.

Students entering this competition might be interested in the following undergraduate courses offered at St Hugh’s College: PPE, History and Politics, Philosophy and Modern Languages, PPL (Psychology, Philosophy and Linguistics), Economics and Management, Computer Science and Philosophy, Mathematics and Philosophy.

Entries should be 2000 – 4000 words in length, including any material in the footnotes which is additional commentary or content related to your essay. References or citations in footnotes, and your bibliography, are not included in this word count. You are welcome to use whichever style of referencing you prefer.

Instructions for submitting your entry can be found on the right-hand side of this page. The closing date for entries is 5pm on Friday 26th July 2024. Prize winners will be announced online by the end of September.

Please direct any enquiries to

How to enter the essay competition:

To enter the competition, please complete the following steps. Please note that these instructions should be followed in on go; do not complete Step 1 until you are also ready to complete Step 2.

Step 1

Please fill out the form here with your personal details:

Kavita Singh Essay Competition 2024 Submission Form

Step 2

Once you have completed Step 1, you will receive an email with a link to submit your essay file (if you do not receive this straightaway, please check your spam folder and double-check that you entered your email into the form correctly). Please follow the instructions on that page, attaching your essay in the format specified.

Please note that any essay submissions received after the deadline of 5pm on Friday 26th July 2024 will not be considered. Therefore, please ensure that you complete both Step 1 and Step 2 ahead of this deadline. Be aware that the submission portal may become very busy around that time, so it is best to avoid attempting submission very close to 5pm. 


2023 Winners


Isaac Hole, Y12, Meadowhead School: Suppose technology advanced to such an extent that brain transplants became possible and someone else’s brain was implanted into your body, while yours was implanted into theirs. Would you emerge from this process with a new brain, or with a new body? Or would neither of these descriptions of the situation be correct?


Samuel Godson, Y12, London Academy of Excellence Tottenham: Can we design democratic institutions that take into account the full preferences of the majority and where group decision-making is stable and where the process satisfies minimal conditions of fairness?


Erin McGurk, Y12, Altrincham Grammar School for Girls: Recent years have seen an active public debate on the merits and costs of wealth taxes. What problems (if any) could a wealth tax solve and what are the expected economic costs of such a tax?

The winners and a number of those who had done particularly well were invited to tea in College in September.