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Student Note Award

Now Accepting Submissions

This year’s competition will focus on the proper scope of administrative power. How can Article III courts curb unlawful administrative power? What constitutional limits, if any, can be placed on the jurisdiction of Article III courts to review administrative proceedings?

For example, the Supreme Court recently held in Axon v. SEC that the statutory review schemes set out in the Securities Exchange Act and Federal Trade Commission Act do not displace a district court’s federal-question jurisdiction over claims challenging as unconstitutional the structure or existence of the SEC or FTC. That decision built upon the Court’s prior decision in Free Enterprise Fund v. PCAOB, overturning six circuit courts in the process.

Do any other agencies’ processes suffer from the same defects identified in Axon and Cochran?  What other claims can defendants make in federal district court in the wake of Axon and Cochran?

Justice Gorsuch concurred in the result but rejected the Thunder Basin doctrine.  Was Thunder Basin implicitly overruled? 

These are but a few possible avenues for exploring the lawless and uncontrolled expansion of administrative power. Submissions are encouraged to engage these and similar questions.

Is There a Prize?

Yes! The winning submission will earn a $10,000 prize, which will be shared equally between the student who authored the note and the journal that selected it for publication. If NCLA receives a sufficient number of qualified entries, second and third-place prizes will also be awarded in the amount of $5,000 and $2,500, respectively, to be split equally between the author and the journal that selected the note for publication.

Who Is Eligible?

NCLA will accept only notes, comments, or articles written by a J.D. or LL.M. candidate at an accredited law school in the United States and selected for publication (but not yet published as of June 1, 2023) by a law review or similar journal at an accredited law school in the United States. Actual publication of the note, comment, or article will be a condition of receiving the prize funds.

What Is a Student Note?

Although the specifics vary from journal to journal, student notes are generally 15,000 words or fewer, and comprise original, in-depth analysis and commentary on a legal or policy issue. The competition is also open to comments or articles written by students and published in law journal, even if they are not technically a note (i.e., we are just using the word “note” as a catch-all term).

How Do I Enter?

The submission deadline is May 1, 2024. NCLA is accepting all notes/comments approved for publication by May 1, 2024.  The publication date must be fixed at the time publication is approved in order for the note/comment to qualify. It would be ideal if the publication date came before December 31, 2024, but as a former editors of a law journals, we know how circumstances often work to complicate publication dates.

To enter, simply fill out the form to the right and submit the necessary documents.

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Accepted file types: pdf, doc, docx, Max. file size: 100 MB, Max. files: 1.