The Naturist Education Foundation Scholastic Award

      In an ongoing effort to encourage thoughtful, academic discussions pertaining to naturism, the Naturist Education Foundation (NEF) has established the NEF Scholastic Award. NEF offers awards of $1000 and a one-year membership to The Naturist Society up to twice per calendar year for a superior academic research essay on the topic of naturism. Members of The Naturist Society who are currently enrolled in an accredited college may submit essays for an award. NEF will also accept submissions from college students who are not currently members of The Naturist Society for one of the two awards each year. Winning essays may, upon approval of the magazine's editor, be published in Nude & Natural magazine.

NEF has, as an important aspect of its mission, the education of legislators, business owners, and the general public on matters pertaining to naturism. NEF recognizes that naturists attending colleges and universities have a unique opportunity to educate society about the values and advantages of social nudity. To this end, NEF wishes to foster — through the NEF Scholastic Award — informed discussions on these matters. NEF encourages students to apply the knowledge and skills acquired in their education to the task of writing an original research essay exploring one of the many aspects or implications of naturism.

Who may submit an essay for the NEF Scholastic Award?
Anyone who is currently registered at an accredited college or university as an undergraduate or graduate student, may submit a research essay for one of the two annual NEF Scholastic Awards offered by the Naturist Education Foundation. Students may receive, at most, one NEF Scholastic Award, although there is no limit to the number of essays a student may submit. TNS staff, NEF board members, and their immediate family members are not eligible for the NEF Scholastic Award.

What kind of essay may be submitted for the NEF Scholastic Award?
Essays submitted for the NEF Scholastic award must be original. That is, essays must be written by the students submitting them; they must not be plagiarized in any form; and they must not have been published in print or on the Internet. Students may use essays they have submitted for their class assignments. Students are encouraged to seek their instructor's assistance in editing and proofreading the essays prior to submission for the award.

Essays must address and focus on issues surrounding naturism. By "naturism" NEF refers to the practice of social nudity as defined by The Naturist Society: "Naturism: A Way of life in greater fidelity to nature, with a norm of full nudity in social life…when possible and appropriate. We aim to enhance acceptance and respect for one's self, other persons, and the biosphere." More generally, naturism is to be understood, for the purposes of the NEF Scholastic Award, to pertain to non-erotic social nudity. This would include for instance, but not be limited to, topics such as the history of local naturist groups, the history of naturism in distinct countries, biographies of key naturists around the world, analyses of legal issues pertaining to non-erotic social nudity, critiques of social policy relevant to naturism or naturist activism, exegeses of sacred texts concerning nudity, and assessments of naturism (and not mere nudity) as it is found in painting, literature, film, and other arts. This would not include topics such as nudity in sex-work, strip bars, or exhibitionism. Essays may address naturism from the perspective of history, sociology, politics, law, art, religion, psychology, philosophy, or any other academic field within the Liberal Arts. If students are unsure about the relevancy of their essay topic, they may contact the NEF Scholastic Award Committee at the address below.

Submissions must be research essays, and not pieces of "creative writing," poetry, drama, or other forms of fictional prose. Neither should they be merely a relation of anecdotal experience or a summary of one's personal views. Submitted essays should extend the present knowledge of naturism. Essay need not be supportive of naturism. The purpose of each essay should be to educate thoughtful and critical readers on an issue of relevance to naturism.

Essays submitted must be 3000-6000 words in length. There is no demand for students to conform to a particular style sheet or manual of style. Essays should, however, follow standards of writing excellence expected of a superior college paper. Adequate referencing (e.g., endnotes, footnotes, bibliography, reference list) is expected, when relevant to the essay.

In what format should essays be submitted for the NEF Scholastic Award?
Essays submitted for the NEF Scholastic Award should be submitted in English and electronically, either via email or on a disk or memory stick. Microsoft Word is the preferred format, but NEF can probably translate whatever you send.

Those submitting essays are strongly encouraged also to send photos, graphics, maps, artwork, or diagrams that are pertinent to their text. Inability to submit such non-textual materials will in no way impact the chances of winning the NEF Scholastic Award. If a student's essay is chosen for the award, however, it may be published in Nude & Natural magazine, and the magazine editors would be looking for photos and other visual materials to accompany the essay. Students whose essays are published will submit a photo of themselves to be used in the magazine along with their essay.

NEF does not guarantee return of materials submitted, so retain copies of everything you submit.

Where should essays be submitted for the NEF Scholastic Award?
Mail disk or memory stick versions of essays to NEF Scholastic Award, PO Box 132, Oshkosh, WI 54903. Email copies may be sent to nef@naturisteducation.org. Include with the essay your name, current TNS membership number of the membership assigned to your name if you are a TNS member, a copy of your current student body card or other form of proof of current registration, your mailing address, phone number, and email address.

When are the deadlines for submissions for the NEF Scholastic Award?
There are no deadlines for the NEF Scholastic Award. Beginning in 2018, NEF will accept essays as they arrive, judge their merits, and offer the two awards as they are warranted. So, the two awards may be given early in each year, or — if no submissions meriting the award are received — less than two awards may be given that year. NEF's intentional lack of a "deadline" structure is designed to allow more students to submit essays as their individual timelines allow.

Who determines the recipients of the NEF Scholastic Awards?
The Naturist Education Foundation consists of the nine board members democratically elected to the Naturist Action Committee by the membership of The Naturist Society. The NEF board has established the NEF Scholastic Award Committee, consisting of NEF board members and others they may select from outside the NEF board. Members of the NEF Scholastic Award Committee are selected on the basis of their experience in academia, writing, editing, publishing, naturism, and development of scholarship or award programs.

How will the essays submitted for the NEF Scholastic Award be judged?
The NEF Scholastic Award Committee will read essays with an eye for relevance to naturism, for excellence in presentation, for originality, for the topic's interest value, for accuracy of information provided, for strength of argument, and for value of contribution to naturist research. All winning essays will be of a quality high enough for publication in Nude & Natural magazine. If no essays submitted in a year are deemed by the NEF Scholastic Award Committee to merit the award, then no award will be given that year. Students submitting essays for the award will be informed of the results within six weeks of their submission.

What else do students need to know about submitting essays for the NEF Scholastic Award?
The Naturist Education Foundation retains the non-exclusive right to publish all essays submitted for the NEF Scholastic Award. Recipients of the NEF Scholastic Award are responsible for any taxes they may accrue due to receiving the award, and will need to supply NEF with their social security number so that NEF may inform the IRS of the award's presentation. If you have specific questions not addressed here, please contact NEF at:

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