Texas high school seniors, start your essays.

The 2016 Don't mess with Texas Scholarship Contest invites Texas high school seniors to apply for one of three scholarships to help with college expenses. One $6,000 grand prize scholarship and two $2,000 scholarships will be awarded in May 2016.

Sponsored by Forestar, the Don't mess with Texas Scholarship recognizes the achievements of high school seniors who have taken a leadership role to prevent litter in their school and/or community and promote awareness of the Don't mess with Texas initiative.

Any high school senior currently attending public, private, or home school in Texas and planning to pursue a two- or four-year degree at an accredited Texas college or university next year may apply.

Applications will be judged based on student essays detailing creative and sustainable solutions to litter problems. They can be submitted either online or by mail.

Don’t mess with Texas is a statewide litter prevention program that encourages Texans to keep their roadways clean. More than half a billion pieces of visible trash accumulate on Texas roadways each year, and Texans ages 16 to 34 are the most likely to litter.

In their essay, students have the opportunity to show how their efforts raise awareness of littering and motivate a new generation of Texans to take pride in their state by putting trash where it belongs.

Need inspiration? Check out videos of the 2015 scholarship winners and their projects!

Download a flyer (PDF, 582kb) to share or post at your school.

Visit DontmesswithTexas.org to learn about the scholarship and how to apply. Need help? Contact scholarships@dontmesswithtexas.org.