Youth Poet Laureate of MontCo PA
The Montgomery County Youth Poet Laureate Program is designed to award a young poet (14-18) the title of youth poet laureate who is well versed in poetic expression, exemplifies a deep understanding of poetic language, exhibits uniqueness and newness and shows appreciation for all art forms.
The MCYPL serves from April to March
How does the competition work?
Each year MCYPL recruits a celebrity poet who adjudicates the submitted manuscripts. The window for submissions generally opens in October and closes at the end of March. the announcement of the winner is made by April 1.
The newly selected Youth Poet Laureate is honored with certificate recognizing their efforts in earning the title and $250 honorarium.
The Award is presented at the annual Poet Laureate Award Reception at Eclipse Center for Creative Community in Lansdale during which the winner will be given an opportunity to read their work and be introduced to other members of the poetry community.
Who can compete?
Poets must be high school or home school students, residents of Montgomery County, and be 14 to 18 years old.
18 year olds who may be eligible for both poet laureate competitions may only submit for one. Submitting for both will cause disqualification.
The Responsibilities of the Youth Poet Laureate
The YPL with be responsible to raise awareness of and promote poetry in the Montgomery County community. They will be given the opportunity to serve as a leader and champion the MCPA youth poetry community through outreach to Montgomery county schools, school districts and libraries through services and events.
They will be called on to participate in community projects and events that promote poetry, literacy, arts education, and youth advocacy and must complete at least one community service project during their term. They will also be required to participate in at least 4 public functions.
Introducing the 2022 Montgomery County Youth Poet Laureate, Evan Wang
MCPL is pleased to announce the award of 2022 Youth Poet Laureate to Evan Wang, a sophomore at Upper Merion High School. He will be Montgomery County (PA)’s first youth poet laureate and will serve until March 2024.
Executive Director, Joanne Leva, and MCPL’s leadership team chose Evan on the basis of literary merit to honor his talent, ingenuity and vision. His work has appeared in Teen Ink, Youth Be Heard, Cathartic Youth Literary Magazine, and Bleeding Soul Poetry, among other publications. Evan is a Topical Winner of JUST POETRY!!!’s National High School Poetry Contest and winner of Teen Ink’s weekly competition.
Evan presented his plan for a Youth Poet Laureate Program to the Indian Valley Arts Foundation in January 2022. As Montgomery County’s YPL, he will help develop the Youth Poet Laureate program going forward and work with the leadership team to promote future contests, secure a judge, and publicize this new position and its aims.
We are so proud to confer this honor upon Evan, a visionary community member with great values. He saw a need to promote poetry for other local young poets and will work to make this happen.
Michelle Taransky teaches professional, creative and academic writing at Penn. Taransky received a BA in English with honors from The University of Chicago and an MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, where she was a Truman Capote Fellow. The author of Sorry Was In...