MIPA Individual Contest

Please review the information on this page before using the Submit Entries links below.


  • Feb. 15, 2019
  • Early Deadline for Yearbooks (save 10 percent off entry fees – please use “Pay by Invoice” options)
    • Spring Delivery: July 16, 2018
    • Fall Delivery: Nov. 15, 2018

General Contest Rules & Information

  • Entries that do not meet contest requirements will be disqualified. Carefully read all rules and instructions.
  • Entries should have been published or broadcast by a MIPA member student media outlet from Feb. 17, 2018, to Feb. 15, 2019, or slated for broadcast.
  • Each Michigan-based MIPA member student media outlet may submit up to two (2) entries in each category, unless otherwise noted. Each entry is to be submitted with its own, separate entry form.
  • No entry may be submitted into more than one category, unless otherwise noted in the category description. A single entry in more than one category may be disqualified in all categories. If an entry was published via multiple platforms (ie, print, online and/or broadcast), it should be entered only once.
  • No more than four students may be individually named on an entry.
  • New for 2019: A student may not be listed as the author of more than two entries in any single category (including shared bylines), even if that student works for multiple student media outlets at a school.
  • Entries must be submitted by the deadline. For categories that allow entry by mail, entries must be postmarked by the deadline and must arrive in the MIPA office by judging day, regardless of postmark. Late entries will not be accepted. The contest system automatically shuts down after 11:59 p.m. on the deadline.
  • Entries in most categories are submitted in a digital format to our web-based contest system. Paper submissions in these categories will not be accepted for any reason. If you no longer have access to your original digital files, you may scan pages to submit to the contest.
  • Entries should be submitted using the adviser’s Submittable account. Individual students should not have their own Submittable accounts.
  • Review each category description for information on required publication types (print, online, video, etc), acceptable file formats and other requirements. Incomplete entries or entries submitted into the wrong category may be disqualified. The MIPA office is not able to decide into which category an entry should go.
  • Video and audio entries should be no longer than five minutes, unless otherwise noted. Time requirements do not include name slates, countdowns, etc. Video and audio should be hosted on your own website or by a file sharing service such as YouTube, Vimeo, Soundcloud, etc. Check to be sure your entry is not locked behind a password or set to private. Entries that are not publicly viewable on judging day may be disqualified.
  • Payment should be made by the submission deadline. Checks or purchase orders should be postmarked by this date. Credit card payments should be completed by this date. If your school is slow to process checks or purchase orders, plan ahead! You can pay fees before you submit your entries.
  • Use of copyrighted music, artwork, videos or other materials without written permission of the copyright holder may violate U.S. law and MIPA’s Copyright & Plagiarism Policy. Entries that violate MIPA’s Copyright & Plagiarism Policy will be disqualified. If you feel your entry may be questioned by a judge, please include a note with the entry confirming the source of the material,  permission to use it and/or a reasoned “fair use” claim. If you are making a “fair use” claim on copyrighted materials, please cite your reasoning on the entry form. Guidelines for “fair use” are quite restrictive, and educational use generally is not an acceptable fair use argument for any work that is published/broadcast outside of the classroom.
  • Please note: If any music is included in an entry, the entrant must indicate the title(s) of the track(s) used and the source of the music. This information should include the specific music service library, such as Audioblocks, Soundzabound, Digital Juice, etc., or another specific source (such as URL) that could be used to verify that you have appropriately used this work.
  • Please remember that this is strictly a contest and not a critique service. MIPA annually receives more than 4,000 Individual Contest entries. We are unable to provide comments from judges for each of those entries.
  • All contest entries may be published by MIPA for non-commercial purposes and to promote MIPA educational activities.
  • Winners of this contest will be announced at the MIPA awards ceremony in April. Winning work may be showcased on MIPA’s A Cut Above website and/or other MIPA platforms.
  • Student media outlets entering this contest will compete in divisions. For Yearbook categories, divisions are based on the page count of books, with middle schools competing in their own division. For other categories, divisions are based on school enrollment. Divisions are determined by MIPA’s Yearbook, Newspaper, Video and Digital Media Chairs. Each division will have roughly the same number of schools. Divisions may be combined in any category based on the number of entries, at the descretion of the chairs.

Paying Entry Fees

You may pay entry fees by check, purchase order or credit card.

Payment by checks or purchase orders should be postmarked by the submission deadline. Credit card payments should be completed by the deadline. If your school is slow to process checks or purchase orders, plan ahead. You can always pay fees before you submit your entries.

To request an invoice for all entries and critique service fees:

  • Click the “Submit entries and create an invoice” option below to get started.
  • Submit your entries. Each category name in the contest system will include “Pay by Invoice” in the title.
  • When done submitting, tally your entries and complete the MIPA Contest Payments form.
  • You can pay when you fill out the form, or the system will email you an invoice for your school business office.

To pay for each entry by credit card as you submit it:

  • You may pay as you submit each entry. Click the “Submit entries and pay as you submit” option below to get started.
  • Submit your entries. Each category name in the contest system will include “Pay Now” in the title.
  • You will be asked to enter credit card information each time you submit an entry. (This is a good option if you only have a few entries.)

Enter Contests

Submit Entries

There are two methods for submitting entries. You can pay for each entry as you submit it (this is a good method if you only have a few entries), or after you submit entries you can create an invoice for your school to pay (this is the best method if your school pays by check or via P.O, or if you enter many categories).

How to Submit Your Entries

  1. Review the Contest General Rules & Information on this page.
  2. To start, select from the choices immediately above whether you plan to create an invoice to make a single payment for all contest entries or whether you want to pay as you submit each entry.
  3. Select which category you plan to enter.
  4. Log into the Submittable contest system:
      • The adviser will be prompted to create a free account in the submission system (accounts carry over from year to year) before uploading your first contest entry. ENTRIES SHOULD BE SUBMITTED FROM AN ACCOUNT USING THE ADVISER’S NAME!  That’s how both you and MIPA can track all of your entries. Do not allow students to create their own accounts for individual contest and Spartan entries!
    • RETURNING USERS: Log in to access your account.
  5. Fill out the entry form as directed.
  6. Enter payment information or create an invoice for your school.