|Chelsea Anokye-Agyei in performance.|
Photo by Joe del Tufo.
From an initial field of 20 Delaware high school students and then 12 state finalists, Chelsea Anokye-Agyei, a senior from Hodgson Vo-Tech High School, earned the title of 2019 Poetry Out Loud Delaware State Champion at the state finals held in Smyrna on February 26. The first runner-up was Samuel McGarvey from Tall Oaks Classical School, and the second runner-up was Sarah Stevenson from Milford Senior High School.
Anokye-Agyei’s final recitation, The Albatross by Kate Bass, earned her high marks with the judges. The full poem can be found on the Poetry Foundation’s website.
For her winning presentation, Anokye-Agyei will receive $200 and an all-expenses-paid trip to Washington with a chaperone to compete at the national championship on April 29-May 1. Hodgson Vo-Tech High School will receive a $500 stipend for the purchase of poetry materials. Samuel McGarvey, the first runner-up, will receive $100, and Tall Oaks Classical School will receive $200 for its school library.
The Poetry Out Loud state competition, sponsored by the Delaware Division of the Arts in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation, is part of a national program that encourages high school students to learn about great poetry through memorization, performance, and competition.