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Calling all middle school students!

Share your ideas and flex your civics knowledge in the National Civics Bee®

About the Bee

The St. Mary’s County Chamber of Commerce is partnering with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation to host a first-of- its-kind civics competition that encourages young Americans to engage in civics and contribute to their communities. Participating 6th, 7th and 8th graders will flex their civics knowledge for a chance to win recognition and cash prizes. Finalists will be invited to Washington, DC to compete in the inaugural National Civics Bee national championship in Fall 2024.

  • Students enter the Bee by submitting a 500-word essay on a problem facing their community. How might they and other citizens solve the problem?
  • 20 finalists are selected to participate in a 90-minute live and in-person event featuring two rounds of civics quiz questions followed by a Q&A with ~3-5 judges.
  • Three finalists from the live event will advance to the Maryland State competition.
  • One finalist from the Maryland State competition will advance to the national US Chamber competition in Washington, DC.

Prize Details:
1st place: $500 cash
2nd place: $250
3rd place: $125

How to Enter

Any 6th, 7th, or 8th grade student residing in Maryland with an idea about using civics to improve their community may review the rules and submit an essay application on this page:


  • February 19: Essay Submission Deadline (NEW)
  • February 20: Begin Essay Judging (NEW)
  • February 26: Essay Judging Deadline (NEW)
  • February 27: Notify Local Finalists (NEW)
  • March 7: Parent Confirmation Deadline (NEW)
  • April 13: Live Bee – Cole Cinema, St. Mary’s College of Maryland, 10 am (NEW)

State Live Bee Competition: Between May 1, 2024 through August 30, 2024 [to be scheduled]

If you absolutely must send your essay by hard copy, please be sure to follow these instructions and call us at 301-737-3001 so that we are on the lookout for it! All essay submissions must be postmarked by February 19, 2024.

Additional Info

Student Flyer
Teacher’s Guide
• National Civics Bee® Highlights Video:

Why Civics?

The St. Mary’s County Chamber of Commerce is participating in the non-partisan National Civics Bee® because we believe that informed and active citizens make for a strong country, a strong economy, and a strong workforce, and that our continued prosperity depends on the strength of all three. Through the Bee, we are promoting greater civic knowledge in Maryland and celebrating our civic pride.

Live Event Info

Live Bee Competition – April 13, 2024 10 am
Cole Cinema, Center for the Study of Democracy, St. Mary’s College of Maryland, 47645 College Dr, St. Mary’s City, MD 20686

Are you interested in showcasing your company’s commitment to developing active and engaged citizens?


Unlock the potential of future leaders by purchasing a sponsorship for the Civics Bee and supporting the next generation of informed and engaged citizens!
  • ​Presenting Sponsor – $2,000 (1 SOLD OUT)
  • Silver Sponsor – $1,000 (1 available)
  • Bronze Sponsor – $500 (3 available)
  • ​Impact Partner Sponsor – $350 (5 available)
  • Advocate Partner Sponsor – $200 (8 available)
  • Community Partner Sponsor – $100 (10 available)
  • In-Kind Sponsorships available: 20-25 tablets, lunch for contenders, etc.

Contact Us

If you have any questions or need additional information, or for information about sponsorships, please contact Dr. Christine Bergmark, CEO/President or Nancy Montano at or 301-737-3001.