The Delaware Division of the Arts to Host 2022 Virtual Poetry Out Loud State Competition

Ten Delaware high school students to compete for the state title and to advance to virtual National Finals

March 2, 2022

WHAT: Ten Delaware high school students participated in the taped state finals for Poetry Out Loud: National Recitation Contest that will premiere on the Delaware Division of the Arts’ YouTube channel. The winner of this competition will represent Delaware and advance to the national semifinals, to be streamed on Sunday, May 1, 2022 on, with the top nine students advancing to the national finals, that will stream on Sunday, June 5, 2022. This program is sponsored by the Delaware Division of the Arts, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Poetry Foundation.

WHEN: Thursday, March 10, 2022, at 7:00 p.m.

WHERE: Delaware Division of the Arts’ YouTube channel

WHO: Finalists, Featured Speakers and Judges will be:


2022 Delaware State Finalists

Name School
Blessings Akanbi Hodgson Vocational Technical School
Joelle Caternor Smyrna High School
Robyn Goodman Woodbridge High School
Aiden Morris Mount Sophia Academy
Ololade Olubowale The Tatnall School
Natalie Kim Ramos Saint Mark’s High School
Kai Schmiedel Delaware Valley Classical School
Ashley Schnyder Sanford School
Kylie Short Milford High School
Carrie Van Hauter Sussex Central High School


Speakers and judges will be:


Jessica Ball, Director, Delaware Division of the Arts

The Honorable Jeffrey W. Bullock, Secretary of State, State of Delaware

Mistress of Ceremonies:

JoAnn Balingit, D. Teaching Artist


Jamie Brunson, Executive Director, First Person Arts and 2022 Individual Artist Fellow – Playwriting

Kari Ann Ebert, Poetry and Interview Editor, The Broadkill Review

David Salner, Poet and Writer

Alyssa Watters, Teen Center Coordinator, Milford Public Library

Christian Wills, Poet, Teaching Artist, and Lyricist

Beverly Romain, Poet, Teaching Artist, and Writer will serve as Accuracy Judge

Production Team:

Director: Traci Currie, Ph.D, Teaching Artist

Film Editor: Kevin Muhammad, Advocate Media

Closed Captioning: Daniel Sato, Director of Multimedia, Government Information Center, State of Delaware

Program Staff:

Sheila Dean Ross, Program Officer, Arts in Education, Delaware Division of the Arts

Kaitlin Ammon, Program Officer, Communications and Marketing, Delaware Division of the Arts

Dana Wise, Administrative Assistant, Delaware Division of the Arts

OTHER: The 2022 Poetry Out Loud photos will be available the day after the event. Use hashtags: #POL22 and #iampoetryoutloud. Tag us at: @ArtsDelaware

Learn more

About the Delaware Division of the Arts
The Delaware Division of the Arts is an agency of the State of Delaware. Together with its advisory body, the Delaware State Arts Council, the Division administers grants and programs that support arts programming, educate the public, increase awareness of the arts, and integrate the arts into all facets of Delaware life. Funding for Division programs is provided by annual appropriations from the Delaware General Assembly and grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency. For more information about the Delaware Division of the Arts, visit or call 302-577-8278.


Contact: Leeann Wallett, Program Officer, Community Engagement

Applications now open for high-needs educator student loan payment program

Delaware educators who work in high-needs districts or content areas are eligible to apply for this year’s High Needs Educator Student Loan Payment program.


Created under Governor John Carney, Delaware’s educator student loan repayment program provides eligible educators with up to $2,000 a year to repay their student loans. Educators who work in certification areas in which Delaware has a shortage or educators who work in Delaware high-needs schools are eligible to apply.


Educators can apply for the loan repayment program online ( through 4:30 p.m. on Oct. 1, 2019.


For the 2019-2020 academic year, the budget for this program increased to $700,000.


Learn more about the importance of the program from first-year recipients at


Media Contact: Alison May,, 302-735-4006