I am proud to announce my participation as a judge for the upcoming San Luis Obispo County Poetry Out Loud finals. It is my belief that studying poetry in school is valuable, but fostering a personal connection with the art of composing poems is an even more enriching modality of empowerment. Therefore, serving as a judge in this competition is an honor.
Poetry Out Loud is a national program that empowers high school students by encouraging them to memorize and recite classic and contemporary poems. It provides them with a unique opportunity to develop their public speaking skills, deepen their understanding of language, and connect with the power of words.
I am excited to witness the talent and dedication of the students competing in the finals. They have undoubtedly put in a lot of hard work to prepare, and my fellow judges and I are eager to hear them share their passion for poetry.
During my youth, I immersed myself in English, American, Senegalese, Cameroonian, and French literature. My graduate studies further expanded my understanding, encompassing classical Arabic poems, Spanish odes, and contemporary Moroccan poetry. I have actively participated in, organized, and witnessed poetry readings of all kinds from private salon readings to workshops, regional festivals, and worldwide slam competitions.
As a judge, I will be seeking students who demonstrate a clear understanding of the poems they recite, coupled with the ability to connect with the audience through their performance. Passion for poetry and the ability to convey it to others are qualities I will highly value.
Poetry Out Loud is a remarkable program with the potential to profoundly impact young lives. I am grateful for the opportunity to be a part of it and look forward to helping select the next San Luis Obispo County champion.
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