Post 1540 shared the high school audio essay contest, Voice of Democracy, with its four sponsoring high schools. Kaimuki High, Henry J. Kaiser High, and Theodore Roosevelt High (Sacred Hearts Academy declined to participate) will be competing for cash prizes and a perpetual plaque. This year's theme is "America: Where do we go from here?" and the audio essays are due by October 31, 2021. Top winners receive $250, a medal, and their name engraved on a perpetual plaque to be displayed at the winner's school for the year.
The Patriot's Pen essay contest for middle schools was shared with Post 1540's feeder schools. Commander Peter Hirai and Senior Vice Commander Gary Westernoff visited Prince David Kawananakoa Middle, Nui Valley Middle, William P. Jarrett Middle, Robert Louis Stevenson Middle, and George Washington Middle (Sacred Hearts Academy declined to participate) to share information with the principals. This year's theme is "How can I be a good American?" and the essays are due by October 31, 2021. Top winners receive $200, a medal, and their name engraved on a perpetual plaque to be displayed at the winner's school for the year.
Top winners for both the high school and middle school contests go on to compete at the state level and possibly at the national level where they may compete for thousands in prizes.