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Library of Congress

Library to Host 2018 National Student Poets Appointment Ceremony

National Student Poets to Offer Readings at National Book Festival

Five outstanding youth poets chosen from among thousands of award-winning student writers will be appointed National Student Poets in a ceremony Aug. 30 at the Library of Congress. The young poets, who represent five different regions of the country, will read original works as part of a ceremony that will be led by Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden and Institute of Museum and Library Services Director Kathryn K. Matthew.

Guest speakers will include 2017 National Student Poet Annie Castillo. The pinning ceremony and poetry reading will take place at 4 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 30 in the Mumford Room on the sixth floor of the Library’s James Madison Memorial Building, 101 Independence Ave. S.E., Washington D.C. Free tickets are required for the ceremony. For more information and to secure tickets, visit this event-ticketing site.


The appointment ceremony is presented in partnership with the Institute of Museum and Library Services and the Alliance for Young Artists and Writers. The event will be livestreamed on the Library’s Facebook page at facebook.com/libraryofcongress and its YouTube site at youtube.com/loc.

The National Student Poets will offer public readings Saturday, Sept. 1, at the National Book Festival at 12 p.m. and 3 p.m. on the Parade of States Stage. The festival schedule is online at loc.gov/bookfest.

As announced earlier this month, the 2018 National Student Poets are:

>> Darius Atefat-Peckham, 17, a senior at Interlochen Arts Academy in Interlochen, Michigan (Midwest)
>> Alexandra Contreras-Montesano, 17, a senior at Burlington High School in Burlington, Vermont (Northeast)
>> Daniel Blokh, 17, a senior at the Alabama School of Fine Arts in Birmingham, Alabama (Southeast)
>> Heather Laurel Jensen, 16, a junior at Red Mountain High School in Mesa, Arizona (Southwest)
>> Ariana Smith, 16, a senior at Las Vegas Academy of the Arts in Las Vegas (West)

The National Student Poets Program - a collaboration of the Institute of Museum and Library Services and the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers - strives to inspire other young people to achieve excellence in their own creative endeavors and promote the essential role of writing and the arts in academic and personal success. The program links the National Student Poets with audiences and neighborhood resources such as museums and libraries, and other community-anchor institutions and builds upon the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers' long-standing work with educators and creative teens through the prestigious Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. The Poets' appointment events are hosted in cooperation with the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C., and held in conjunction with the National Book Festival. More information on the program can be found at artandwriting.org/NSPP.

The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation's libraries and museums. We advance, support, and empower America’s museums, libraries, and related organizations through grantmaking, research, and policy development. Our vision is a nation where museums and libraries work together to transform the lives of individuals and communities. To learn more, visit imls.gov and follow IMLS on Facebook and Twitter.

The Alliance for Young Artists & Writers, a nonprofit organization, identifies teenagers with exceptional artistic and literary talent and brings their remarkable work to a national audience through the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. Founded in 1923, the Awards program is the longest-running, most prestigious initiative of its kind, having fostered the creativity and development of millions of young people through opportunities for recognition, exhibition, publication, and scholarships. During the past six years alone, students have submitted well over a million works of art and writing, and the program has provided more than $30 million in scholarships and awards for top participants. To learn more, visit artandwriting.org.

The Library of Congress Poetry and Literature Center fosters and enhances the public's appreciation of literature. To this end, the center administers the endowed Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry position, coordinates an annual season of readings, performances, lectures, conferences, and symposia, and sponsors high-profile prizes and fellowships for literary writers. For more information, visit loc.gov/poetry/.

The Library of Congress is the world’s largest library, offering access to the creative record of the United States - and extensive materials from around the world - both on-site and online. It is the main research arm of the U.S. Congress and the home of the U.S. Copyright Office. Explore collections, reference services and other programs and plan a visit at loc.gov; access the official site for U.S. federal legislative information at congress.gov; and register creative works of authorship at copyright.gov


Media Contact: Brett Zongker (202) 707-1639, bzongker@loc.gov
Public Contact: Robert Casper (202) 707-1308, roca@loc.gov
Request ADA accommodations five business days in advance at (202) 707-6362 or ADA@loc.gov
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