On Friday, March 2, 2018, forty-one high school students from around the state will take center stage for three rounds of poetry recitation and the chance to be named Michigan’s 2018 Poetry Out Loud Champion. The competition, free and open to the public, will be held at the Lansing Crowne Plaza, 925 S. Creyts Rd, Lansing, MI 48917, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The awards ceremony will begin at 3:30 p.m.
Forty-six Michigan high schools challenged their students to learn about great poetry while building their public speaking skills in Poetry Out Loud, a national poetry recitation competition for high school students. At the state competition, 41 school champions will compete in three rounds of recitation for the chance to be named this year’s state champion.
The state champion receives a $1200 cash award, $1500 stipend for his or her school, and an all-expenses-paid trip to Washington, D.C. to represent Michigan at the national competition this April 23-25. The first runner-up will receive $600, with $700 for his or her school. The second runner-up will receive $200, with $200 for his or her school. The third runner-up will receive $100, with $100 for his or her school. Student and school prizes at the state level are funded by the National Endowment for the Arts and the Liesel Litzenburger Meijer Fund.
The national champion will receive a $20,000 college scholarship.
Participating students represent new and returning school partners across Michigan; many are traveling to Lansing from Greater Detroit, Midland, Grand Rapids, the Leelanau Peninsula, and Upper Peninsula.
In 2017, State Champion MaryKate Wright was the school champion from Owosso High School in Shiawassee County. MaryKate went on to represent Michigan in Washington D.C.
We are very excited to welcome educator and writer Peter Markus, poet and professor Cindy Hunter Morgan, and Detroit non-profit InsideOut Literary Arts to the Michigan competition this year. Markus and Morgan will lead poetry workshops for participating students and teachers on Thursday evening. Youth from InsideOut Literary Arts’ Citywide Poets program will perform for the competition audience on March 2 at 2:45 p.m.Poetry Out Loud is a program of the National Endowment for the Arts and Poetry Foundation, and is hosted locally by the Michigan Humanities Council and Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs. Support is also provided by the National Endowment for the Humanities and Meijer.
Please join us in celebrating the achievement of these students. If interested, interviews with lead teachers or staff at MHC may be arranged.
2017-18 Poetry Out Loud School Champions
|Faith Anderson||Allen Park High School||Allen Park|
|Leah Riutta||Calumet High School||Calumet|
|Ana Smith||Charlevoix High School||Charlevoix|
|Nicole Baker||Detroit School of Arts||Detroit|
|Bianca Lockhart||Martin Luther King Jr. Senior High School||Detroit|
|Terrance Phillips Jr.||Old Redford Academy Preparatory High School||Detroit|
|Zia Sloan||Carman-Ainsworth High School||Flint|
|Basil Gray||The Leelanau School||Glen Arbor|
|Benjamin Edwards||Grand Rapids Innovation Central High School||Grand Rapids|
|Caitlyn Lovelace||Grand Rapids Montessori High School||Grand Rapids|
|Ilya Holden||Houghton Portage Township High School||Houghton|
|Avery Evans||Westwood High School||Ishpeming|
|Eli Hamlet||Grand River Preparatory||Kentwood|
|Emily Whittaker||Kensington Woods Schools||Lakeland|
|Alivia Benedict||Lakewood High School||Lake Odessa|
|Derek Carter||University High School Academy||Lathrup Village|
|Avery Fessenden||Leland Public School||Leland|
|Max Papenfuss||Manistee Catholic Central High School||Manistee|
|Roxy Sprowl||Marquette Senior High School||Marquette|
|Jacob Barnett||Melvindale High School||Melvindale|
|Jenna Wallenbeck||Calvary Baptist Academy||Midland|
|Claire Newman||H.H. Dow High School||Midland|
|James Broderick||Detroit Catholic Central High School||Novi|
|Dora Ivkovich||Okemos High School||Okemos|
|Katilyn Griffin||Owosso High School||Owosso|
|Jaxon Anderson||Pentwater Public Schools||Pentwater|
|Grace Garver||Petoskey High School||Petosky|
|Matthew Hurwitz||Portage Northern High School||Portage|
|Alicia Cotter||Riverview Community High School||Riverview|
|Savannah Young||Rochester High School||Rochester Hills|
|Katelyn Zajac||Stoney Creek High School||Rochester Hills|
|Chloe Malinich||Royal Oak High School||Royal Oak|
|India Pruette||Saline High School||Saline|
|Grace Zucco||Traverse Bay Area Career-Tech Center||Traverse City|
|Lolita Roy||Cousino High School||Warren|
|Lucy Nguyen||Waterford Mott High School||Waterford Township|
|Jayla Woodley||West Bloomfield High School||West Bloomfield|
|Olivia Estep||Williamston High School||Williamston|
|Aiyanna Fivecoat||Roosevelt High School||Wyandotte|
|Tressa Garcia||Yale High School||Yale|
|Marney Brown||Early College Alliance at EMU||Ypsilanti|