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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.

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.


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.

2024 Poster

Cover Sheet

Kavita Singh Submissions Form

Please use this form to upload your submission for the Kavita Singh Competition. Please do not forget to upload the Cover Sheet with your submission.

  • I confirm that I attend a state-funded school or institution. Please note: we will not be able to consider entries by pupils of fee-paying schools.
  • I declare that this essay is my own work and give permission for the judging panel to use licensed electronic software to examine my work for plagiarism should they wish to do so.
  • Drop files here or
    Accepted file types: docx, doc, pdf, docx, doc, pdf, docx, doc, pdf, docx, doc, pdf, Max. file size: 128 MB.
      Please upload an electronic copy of your Essay, together with the completed Cover Sheet, in Word format. Please note that Essays should be no more than 4000 words in length.