Listen Now: The Competition

Every summer for the past seven decades, 50 high school seniors—one from every state—descend on Mobile, Alabama to take part in one of the country’s most lucrative scholarship competitions for teen girls. 

The Competition takes you behind the scenes of the Distinguished Young Women (DYW) program, and follows seven girls as they experience the highs and lows of competing for two weeks, away from home and under the most high-stress circumstances. Some girls enter for the money, some for prestige. All of them are used to being the best and the brightest. But only one will walk away with the top prize.

Host Shima Oliaee (Dolly Parton’s America, Pink Card) was Nevada’s contestant in 2001. More than 20 years later, she returns to Alabama as a judge. What can two weeks with 50 of the country’s most ambitious teens tell us about girlhood in America?

Listen to The Competition on the Wondery App or wherever you get your podcasts. You can binge all episodes early and ad-free right now on Wondery+. Join Wondery+ in the Wondery App or on Apple Podcasts. Start your free trial by visiting now.

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