Poetry Out Loud Scholarship Contest


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  • Scholarship Description
  • Poetry Out Loud encourages the nation’s youth to learn about great poetry through exploration, memorization, and performance. The inspiration for this program is to promote poetry in both the classroom and the community. Students compete in school programs and have the chance to advancing to the national finals in Washington D.C. Check with your school if it participates in the program. Only currently enrolled students in grades 9-12 are eligible, with an exception made for 8th-grade students participating in a 9th- through 12th-grade class.

    A student may not advance to the state finals without competing in a lower-level competition. The Poetry Foundation provides and administers all aspects of the monetary prizes awarded in Poetry Out Loud. State champions and runners up will need a valid tax identification number or social security number at the time that monetary prizes are issued by the Poetry Foundation. Prizes are not transferable. Home-schooled students may participate by competing in a contest at a local school (at the school’s discretion) or with other local home-schooled students. Contact your state coordinator for specific guidelines. For more information or to apply, please visit the scholarship provider's website.
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Comments (58)


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Mariangel G  on 2/23/2023 7:42:22 PM

I would love to apply to this scholarship opportunity. There is a lot about poetry that I love and admire. One of the things is my grandfather who taught me about poetry and encouraged me to read and write. My grandfather introduced me to the art of poetry when I was thirteen. His enthusiasm was contagious and as a result, I began to read his books of poems. In addition to his writing, he would sometimes recite his work which was very interesting and interesting. It transformed me into the person I am today. It was through him that I developed my love for poetry, he put me on the right path and helped me along the way. Poetry is about communication. Giving a voice to the unspoken and sharing feeling not easily expressed through words is what poetry does. You don't need to be a poet to enjoy great poetry. Poetry can be enjoyed by anyone who wants to.

Aziah C  on 2/16/2023 10:37:40 AM

I want to apply because Poetry has been a love of mine for a while now, i love writing ive been writing since i was a little kid and i wanna continue to write and hopefully one day create a poetry podcast so i can post it and share it will with the world hoping i can find people to connect with that also understands my writing

Abigail D  on 12/8/2022 12:27:27 PM

Applying to this scholarship would truly help me pursue my career. I am planning to attend Louisiana Tech University, and major in Clinical Psychology. For me, writing poetry is like an escape from real life, and it can help me gather just how I'm feeling in certain moments. I have applied to so many scholarships, but I haven't won any yet. My passion is to help children feel better, but more so mentally than anything. Winning this scholarship would help provide me with all of the opportunities I need while on my journey to becoming a licensed therapist.

Azalea S  on 12/1/2022 6:08:20 PM

I would like to apply for this scholarship because I use poetry to give out my feelings. I am pursuing a Nursing career in pediatrics. I like to help people get better, and by doing that, I need to get all the money I need. I have applied for a lot of scholarships but haven’t won yet, so I’m hoping this is it.

Magdalena L  on 10/23/2022 1:59:36 PM

I would like to apply, because I absolutely love Poetry. I'm planning to study law and become a lawyer. I want to help people and hopefully still have time for some poetry fun. But becoming a lawyer costs a lot of money. I won the competition "Poetry Out Loud" last year in East Leyden High School. Unfortunately I didn't get into the second stage. I had so much fun. I moved to the US 3 years ago and I was very insecure about my English. Back in Poland where I lived, I used to love Poetry and competed in some competitions. I lost the spark when I moved, but last year I was finally brave enough and decided to get involved in poetry again. That was when I won the contest Poetry Out Loud in high school that I go to. I want to still be able to write poems and recite. But I need money to chase my dream in becoming a lawyer.

Kennedie S  on 4/27/2022 6:25:48 PM

I would love to apply because I am planning to go to Penn State University to study psychology to help people with mental issues and help sustain a healthy mind. Unfortunately, I cannot afford to pay for the school alone, and I need as much help as I can get to achieve my dreams. Also, I love poetry and I believe this is the perfect opportunity for me to showcase my talent and skill in poetry to earn money to help me pay for college.

Kennedie S  on 4/27/2022 6:23:05 PM

I would love to apply because I am planning to go to Penn State University to study psychology to help people with mental issues and help sustain a healthy mind. Unfortunately, I cannot afford to pay for the school alone, and I need as much help as I can get to achieve my dreams. Also, I love poetry and I believe this is the perfect opportunity for me to showcase my talent and skill in poetry to earn money to help me pay for college.

Yasmine S  on 12/15/2021 2:01:36 PM

This sounds like an amazing oppurtunity that i would love to be a part of. This is right up my alley I love to write and being able to win a scholarship for it is amazing.

Rachel B  on 12/28/2020 12:57:50 PM

I entered because poetry flows in my veins. I'm a poetess, so the opportunity to spout off poetry is quite attractive. I'll recite with meraki.

luzayla m  on 12/25/2020 12:23:35 PM

This scholarship would motivate me to continue to do what I do , Which is poetry it is my passion when I am going through hard times I write my feelings down on a piece paper and it helps me express how I may be feeling at that moment in time. This is a great way to release pent up emotion, exercise creativity, and share thoughts and ideas with other people. Many people express their feelings through songs or writing , That people can relate to their life. Poetry helps a lot people that may be struggling with something and they may not know how to express their feelings so when they are feeling down they may jot down notes to remind themselves that it will get better.

China R  on 12/9/2020 9:43:01 AM

I am a sophomore and I would love to do this but I have social anxiety. So to anyone who can do this do it for me.

Gavin A  on 1/31/2020 8:30:35 AM

im a jr in high-school am i aloud to enter?

Laura L  on 3/6/2013 4:45:20 PM

It is a great program. Won on my school level, got 6th place at state! I suggest that anyone interested look into it! Slim chance of getting the $20,000, but who knows!

Samuel P  on 9/30/2012 12:52:46 PM

I was a State Poetry Out Loud finalist my sophomore year. It is pretty nerve-racking, but it is worth the effort!

Daezia S  on 5/27/2012 2:44:41 PM

I would absolutely love to do this! I am going to have a talk with my English teacher so my school can participate!!

Michaela H  on 3/1/2012 8:45:22 PM

This is fantastic! I love how it also gives money to buy books, too!

Jeneice J  on 2/9/2012 8:20:18 AM

This sounds like an amazing oppurtunity that i would love to be a part of. This is right up my alley I love to write and being able to win a scholarship for it is amazing.

Amber R  on 2/7/2012 9:07:46 AM

Poetry is not just words on a piece of paper, it is the writers soul. By reciting poetry we can give a deeper look into the emotions and views of the artist. I think this would be a great opportunity! I can't wait to tell my teacher about this!

amarys i  on 1/6/2012 6:54:44 AM

want to do this and definitely going to talk to my english and creative writing teachers about this so our school can participate. :D

Kourtney B  on 12/9/2011 9:43:23 AM

Horrid stage fright! I can still try though...I think I will try it, it'll help with the stage fright at least right?

Yanet M  on 11/22/2011 9:16:12 PM

I love poetry so this is very interesting

Brian W  on 10/28/2011 12:11:42 PM

This looks like it will be fun. People sharing there poems with the world.

Shaequina M  on 10/21/2011 8:13:34 PM

I will love to participate in this!

Khadijah B  on 10/12/2011 10:00:13 AM

I would love to be a part of this because i feel that im a very good poet and i can show it through my movement !

Lucas N  on 8/17/2011 12:06:33 AM

We did this at my school and I entered! Too bad I have slight stage fright.

Miranda S  on 8/3/2011 6:55:38 PM

wow! this sounds so cool. poetry is fun and this is just such a great way to learn it

jazzmin b  on 7/6/2011 6:20:58 PM

Wow! This is amazing. I love poetry, and this is a wonderful way to express myself. Im excited!

Kirsilyn B  on 7/6/2011 10:14:09 AM

I think my school did this once but I don't think they are going to do it again. I'm not too sure but it would be great to do! It would help tons with Tuition and other expenses.

shaquila b  on 6/17/2011 11:41:11 AM

Yes, I did apply for this scholarship. The reason I did is because I need this scholarship to help me out with my college tuition.

althea k  on 5/11/2011 6:15:33 PM

Poetry is a magnificent way to expres yourself, and even greatly affect others in your community, and all around the world.

iesha m  on 5/11/2011 12:50:13 PM

I love poetry and i would love to show my talent.

Alannah R  on 5/1/2011 2:24:38 PM

I don't think my school does this but I would love to know if there are other ways to enter. I'm an aspiring poet and anyone who would like to read my poetry is welcome to ask. =)

jakory d  on 4/30/2011 5:56:41 PM

I love poetry. I once did allot of hip-hop rapping but I soon quit so I would be able to focus more in school and I didn't like being explicit , to me poetry is something great and for it to be expressed and pushed like this I think it's a wonderful idea. I hope this scholarship is not given to a person with great literature skills but to a person that has great literature skills and loves poetry.

Jessica A  on 4/28/2011 7:23:05 PM

I hope this scholarship helps someone if not me.

Lavunte J  on 4/20/2011 8:00:31 AM

I have always been interested in writing so this will help out alot.

Amber R  on 4/18/2011 10:50:03 AM

how exactly do you apply for this scholarship? do your teachers have to be involved with it first ?

KImberly L  on 4/15/2011 10:44:08 AM

I am 18 years old and I think poetry is great way to understand emotions. Poetry is also a great way to express your own thoughts and feelings. It is a great way to explore knowledge and more teens should learn how to use poetry.

aqilah b  on 3/24/2011 6:24:32 PM

I am 17 year old girl, that is very interested in this scholarship being that i am a poet. I write from the things that go on around me and i love to share these ideas! A lot of teens write and don't get notice and i don't want to be that teen! i want to share my creative words with the people around me.

Brittany F  on 3/10/2011 3:34:16 AM

I'm really interested in these Scholarships as I have always had an interest in English/Literature and hope to someday possibly get into publishing books.

Tara V  on 2/21/2011 10:25:30 PM

This scholarship looks like something that is super fun and educational and i love it! <3

Gustavo G  on 12/9/2010 12:36:35 AM

This scholarship is THE best one I've seen so far since I, myself, am a poet.

Jacquelyn M  on 11/20/2010 11:09:15 PM

I think this Scholarship is an awesome one. So many people write and express themselves through poetry. Awesome, awesome scholarship! And Jonathan R. and Jessica S. really, really good poems! :)

christina b  on 11/19/2010 7:20:35 AM

i applied for this scholarship because i am a good poetry writer and memorize my poems. also, i write my peoms based on my life experiences

Joshua G  on 11/4/2010 5:45:30 PM

I am a 17 year old student and I believe this scholarship is extensively beneficial. As a poetry writer myself, and as a possibly soon to be published poetry author, I think such scholarships deserve to be far more openly shown to teachers at schools. So many teens out there have breathtaking skills in poetry and they go unnoticed because they do not have this schoolarship chance.

Alaysha E  on 10/27/2010 12:10:33 PM

I am a 17 yr old senior at High School Of the Future. I am very interested in this scholarship. I am a big fan of poetry anad I love to listen and to write poetry. Love to learn about the different styles of poetry. Poetry comes in all forms slow, fast, medium. But most of all Poetry is about expressing one's self. I think I fit the criteria for the scholarship. Would love to be in a poetry contest and it's not about winning. It's about experience and enjoying yourself.

Emily M  on 8/4/2010 4:55:29 PM

Jessics S. you need to enter your poem in this. My jaw literally dropped when I read your poem, it was so moving. I wanted to keep reading! Seriously go for it girl!

Nuyka M  on 7/23/2010 1:08:08 PM

johnathan r. you should go for it...i loved the way how you express black and white with your keys of lyrics thats real deep i think you should go for it.....this is to every body you yall should express your thought and feelings poetry is a good way to let go of a lot.

Nuyka M  on 7/23/2010 1:04:19 PM

Im 16 and I usually do express my thoughts with my poems....I say anybody that is up for it should go for it

Bertha A  on 5/12/2010 2:05:12 PM

i'm a simple girl livin' in this complicated world i tried to find my purpose but got lost in the journey i didn't ask why often instead i sat and asked why all i asked for is one simple question why was this simple girl put in this complicated world i finally realize my goal in life was to find out why i was here and now i know i was put here in this complicated world to take a journey to open my eyes to the beauty of this world now ask yourself why were you put here in this beautiful complicated world

Jason H  on 5/6/2010 10:12:48 AM

im 17 and was thinking of submitting one.. this is jsut one i wrote at school for a project real fast..

Jason H  on 5/6/2010 10:12:00 AM

The hurricane Nature turns her head Its beauty is no more It fills your mind with dread Debris covers the floor Trees falling all around Rising tides make an eerie sound Water rises in your home Encrusting it with salty foam You wonder why You pray they survive As you look to the sky And hope help will arrive

Riley O  on 4/13/2010 12:29:13 PM

do it jessica

Jessica S  on 4/10/2010 9:02:55 PM

Deep in thaught, burdened with sorrows, vision swaying in the dark of night, scared to death of the coming of morrows, loves sweet song is out of sight.......ok here is a portion of my latest poem. Should I try for the scholarship using it?.....and Jonathon R. I think you should try for the scholarship your poetry is really good

Crystal P  on 3/10/2010 8:30:29 PM

I think you should apply i really like your poem Jonathan R. it doesn't hurt to try :)

Timmy R  on 3/6/2010 6:09:38 PM

Great Poem Jonathan R. I think you would do very well =)

Lealai T  on 1/7/2010 11:11:53 AM

please apply jonathan. you are very talented. im interested in this too. good luck to all :)

Jessica E  on 12/12/2009 11:12:47 PM

i love peotry and i LOVE this scholarship opportunity!!! =) and btw.... Jonathan r.... i think your poem is pretty Awsome Dude. =)

Jonathan R  on 12/4/2009 2:17:58 PM

my piano cries she knows my pains she's the only one that understands when i have a rough day my soul bleeds as my fingers dance on her pearly black and white keys my heart sings through her the lyrics to my life's story... I posted a portion of a poem that I wrote because I've never shared my poetry with anyone and I want honest feedback about it. Please leave a comment letting me know what you think and if I should apply for this scholarship or if it will be just a waste of my time.