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Poetry Out Loud (POL)



About Poetry Out Loud

Note: The 2022 PA Poetry Out Loud state competition will be held virtually, due to PCA's commitment to supporting health and safety protocols related to the COVID-19 pandemic. More details to follow. 

 Poetry Out Loud (POL) encourages the nation’s youth to learn about great poetry through memorization and recitation. More than 3.8 million high school students from more than 16,000 high schools across the United States have discovered the magic of beautiful language through Poetry Out Loud. 

The PCA collaborates with 14 regional partner organizations to administer regional competitions across the commonwealth.

Poetry Out Loud is part of the PCA's ongoing efforts to foster educational excellence for Pennsylvania's students through participation in the creative process. 

Poetry Out Loud state coordinator: Jamie Dunlap

Poetry Out Loud was created by the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation. Poetry Out Loud is administered in partnership with the state arts agencies of all 50 states, the District of Columbia, the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico. 


2021 Pennsylvania Poetry Out Loud state champion, Taha Vahanvaty


2021 POL News and Results

The 2021 Pennsylvania Poetry Out Loud State (POL) Championship took place virtuall, due to adherence to COVID-19 health and safety protocols. PCA announced the 2021 PA POL champion and runner-up on Monday, March 8 via Facebook.

The 13 regional finalists were part of the 1,000 high school students who participated in the competition in 74 schools across the commonwealth. 

Taha Vahanvaty, a senior from Stroudsburg Area School District in Monroe County is Pennsylvania's 2021 Poetry Out Loud state champion. 

This year, Pennsylvania has two runners-up: 

  • Steven File, a senior from York Suburban School District in York County
  • Q Hanley, a sophomore from Cornwall-Lebanon School District in Lebanon County

Vahanvaty competed at the National Finals, which took place virtually in May 2021.


Additional Information 

Judges for the state and regional finals include performers, poets and cultural and business leaders from across the state. The Pennsylvania Council on the Arts (PCA) sponsors the statewide competition along with its regional partners and arts organizations.