Celebrating Our Nation’s
Top Young Poets
Civic Engagement
National Youth Poet Laureate
Youth Leadership
Artistic Excellence

“The National Youth Poet program is the newly
painted place for the New Communication
—with it, the voice of our new generations.

“When I hear these young poets, call out their hymns,
rhythms and visions of what is going on—I
notice a new world orbiting into our midst.”
Juan Felipe Herrera
Poet Laureate of the United States

National Youth Poet Laureate
The White House & Library of Congress
celebrated by
Amanda Gorman
Announcing National Poet Laureate
Become a Partner

How It Works

Your local winner wins the title of Youth Poet Laureate for one year and is entered into the National Youth Poet Laureate contest, is featured in a National Annual Anthology, and will have access to numerous campaigns, appearances and writing opportunities.

The Program

Urban Word works closely with your organization to tailor the program to suit your needs and mission. We provide the tools, technical support, and management to help you launch your program.

The Book Deal

Independent-publisher powerhouse Penmanship Books will publish A National Anthology of Poetry, including five poems from each Youth Poet Laureate with distribution provided by Small Press Distribution.

The Contest

We provide our partners with a contest model that includes consultations,  judging rubric for civic engagement and poetry, promotional materials, and a cv template.

Events & Press

Each city has autonomy in the details of their program but during the year of the laureateship the organizations provide city-wide performances, which we help to organize and promote. We also encourage and enhance engagement with multiple media and press outlets across the nation.

Help Us Celebrate Youth Voice

Learn More About Becoming a Partner

Our Regional Partners

Regional Youth Poet Laureates

Our Sponsors