City of Madison Announces Youth Poet Laureate Opportunity


The City of Madison is now accepting applicants for the first Youth Poet Laureate

The City of Madison, the Madison Arts Commission, and Madison Poet Laureate Angela Trudell Vasquez announce the establishment of a Youth Poet Laureate Program to recognize a youth under the age of twenty for their literary achievements. With this initiative, Madison will become a member of the National Youth Poet Laureate program, which honors talented poets from ages of thirteen (13) through nineteen (19) and provides for competitive opportunities for young people to showcase their literary art on the regional and national stage.

The Youth Poet Laureate will be expected to give three public readings with the current Madison Poet Laureate. Additionally, the Youth Poet Laureate will have their poems published in the National Youth Poet Laureate annual anthology, and have the opportunity to apply for the National Youth Poet Laureate role in the fall. The term for the Youth Poet Laureate for the City of Madison is one year only. To be eligible for the local, regional, and national youth poet laureate competitions, applicants must be between the ages of thirteen (13) through nineteen (19) at the time of selection, and may be selected only once during that time.

Applications for the 2022-2023 City of Madison Youth Poet Laureate open May 4, 2022 and close June 6, 2022. The selected poet will be announced in July, 2022 at a ceremony at a community library. The Youth Poet Laureate call is pending approval by the Common Council. Application:

Throughout her term as Madison Poet Laureate, Angela Trudell Vasquez has engaged youth poets in her work serving as judge for local poetry contests, curating their work into the annual Bus Line Poetry Project, and including their voices and artistic expressions wherever possible. Ms. Trudell Vasquez, members of the Madison Arts Commission, and other community literary partners feel strongly that it is important to provide a platform that will elevate the unique voices of young poets.

Trudell Vasquez stated, "the youth of Madison deserve this opportunity. I am so grateful to the city of Madison and the Madison Art Commission for making this happen. Housing the program in this way will ensure it is available going forward even after my term as poet laureate ends in 2024."

The National Youth Poet Laureate Program works with local arts organization across the United States to elevate youth voices that are committed to artistic excellence, civic engagement and social impact. The National Youth Poet Laureate Program is supported by the academy of American Poets, Poetry Society of America, the Library of Congress, the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Parks Service, and many more, and is an initiative of Urban Word NYC, Inc., an award-winning youth literary arts and youth development organization.

The Madison Arts Commission’s (MAC) is an 11-member citizen commission appointed by the Mayor to advise the City about matters of arts and culture. MAC’s mission is to foster arts appreciation by initiating partnerships, developing new audiences, and sponsoring diverse artistic activities by emerging and established artists and arts organizations while preserving Madison’s rich artistic tradition. To support a full creative life for all, The Madison Arts Commission commits to championing policies and practices of cultural equity that empower a just, inclusive, equitable city.




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