Congratulations 2024 New York State Poetry Out Loud Finalists!

Congratulations the 18 student finalists in the 2024 season of Poetry Out Loud in New York! We’re thrilled to announce this year’s state champion and runner up.

2024 NY Poetry Out Loud Champion:

Emily Wang, Horace Mann School


Zoey Marcus, Stuyvesant High School

2024 Poetry Out Loud Winners

2024 Poetry Out Loud winner (right) Emily Wang, and runner-up (left) Zoey Marcus

On Saturday, March 9, 2024, high school students from across the state gathered at FIT’s Katie Murphy Amphitheatre for the 2024 Poetry Out Loud State Finals and a chance to represent New York at the 2024 Poetry Out Loud Nationals in Washington, DC.

As the state champion, Emily Wang will receive a $200 cash prize and an all-expenses-paid trip to Washington, DC, to compete at the National Finals, and her school will receive a $500 stipend for the purchase of poetry materials.  As runner-up, Zoey Marcus will receive $100, with $200 for her school. 

This year, over 8,000 students and 350 teachers across the state participated in the Poetry Out Loud program—a national poetry recitation competition with over $50,000 in prizes going to its winners.  In New York, 96 students represented their schools in regional semifinal competitions throughout the month of February. Semifinal locations included Long Island’s Walt Whitman Birthplace Association, the Hudson Valley Writers Center, Stony Brook University, and SUNY campuses including SUNY New Paltz, Buffalo State University, Hudson Valley Community College, Onondaga Community College, and the SUNY Global Center.  

Students recited poems from a range of classic and contemporary poets. Their performances were scored by a distinguished panel of writers and educators: Javan Howard, Christina Olivares, and Aaron Zimmerman.  The 2023-24 NYS Youth Poet Laureate, Stephanie Pacheco, served as Accuracy Judge. T&W’s executive director, Asari Beale, served as the score keeper and writer and actor Twinkle Burke served as the MC.

2024 Poetry Out Loud state finalists

The 2024 New York State Poetry Out Loud finalists


2024 Poetry Out Loud - Award Ceremony

Finalist clap on as the 2024 NY State POL Champion award is presented to Emily Wang


2024 Poetry Out Loud judges and emcee

Judges (l-r) Stephanie Pacheco, Javan Howard, Christina Olivares, Aaron Zimmerman, score keeper Asari Beale, and MC Twinkle Burke


The 2024 Poetry Out Loud New York State Finalists, By Region

New York City: 

  • Syeda Ahmed, Bronx High School of Science 
  • Ariadne Civin, Horace Mann School 
  • Zoey Marcus, Stuyvesant High School 
  • Emily Wang, Horace Mann School 

Westchester/Lower Hudson Valley:

  • Simone DiNota, School of the Holy Child
  • Kai Dirksen, Hastings High School 

Hudson Valley:

  • Dylan Foss, Cornwall Central High School
  • Jinx Hill, Roy C Ketcham High School 

Long Island: 

  • Ryan Karis, Sanford H. Calhoun High School 
  • James Masson, Syosset High School 
  • Kaitlyn Rams, Herricks High School 
  • Isabelle Scherl, Shoreham-Wading River High School 

Capital District: 

  • Jane Kitch-Willis, Schenectady High School 
  • Sarah Pipino, Saratoga Springs High School 

Central New York:

  • Rose Scordo, Olean High School
  • Cayden Young, Whitesboro High School 

Western New York:

  • Anadia St. John, Jamesville Dewitt High School 
  • Jade Wolff, Byron-Bergen School

Next Stop: Poetry Out Loud Nationals! April 30-May 2, 2024

This year’s national finals are planned to take place in Washington, DC, April 30–May 2, 2024. Students participating will represent all 50 states as well as U.S. territories–the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, American Samoa, the Virgin Islands, and Guam.  At the national finals, a total of $50,000 in awards and school/organizational stipends are awarded annually including a $20,000 award for the National Champion, $10,000 for 2nd place, $5,000 for 3rd place, and $1,000 for 4th-12th places.  For further information on Poetry Out Loud, visit


About Poetry Out Loud in New York

Poetry Out Loud is a national arts education program from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and the Poetry Foundation that encourages the study of great poetry by offering a dynamic recitation competition for high school students across the country. This program helps students master public speaking skills, build self-confidence, and learn about literary history and contemporary life. 

In New York, Poetry Out Loud events are coordinated by Teachers & Writers Collaborative in partnership with the New York State Council on the Arts and in collaboration with SUNY campuses and literary organizations, including the Hudson Valley Writers Center, the Hudson Valley Writing Project, the Western New York Writing Project, and the Walt Whitman Birthplace Association. Learn more about Poetry Out Loud in New York at

About the National Endowment for the Arts 

Established by Congress in 1965, the National Endowment for the Arts is the independent federal agency whose funding and support gives Americans the opportunity to participate in the arts, exercise their imaginations, and develop their creative capacities. Through partnerships with state arts agencies, local leaders, other federal agencies, and the philanthropic sector, the Arts Endowment supports arts learning, affirms and celebrates America’s rich and diverse cultural heritage, and extends its work to promote equal access to the arts in every community across America. Visit to learn more. 

About the Poetry Foundation 

The Poetry Foundation recognizes the power of words to transform lives. We work to amplify poetry and celebrate poets by fostering spaces for all to create, experience, and share poetry. Follow the Poetry Foundation on Facebook, Instagram, and X (Twitter), and Poetry magazine at @PoetryMagazine. 


Photos by Elias Berg.