Posted on: April 8, 2022 Posted by: Glacier Staff Comments: 0

By Emma Gomez, Arts & Entertainment Editor

Creative juices will be flowing Wednesday from 3-4:30 p.m. as the voices of student poets are showcased in a live virtual “coffeehouse” event sponsored by the library, The Glacier, and the communications department.

The second annual MV Poetry Contest & Coffeehouse will feature students reading their original poems in celebration of National Poetry Month. To participate in the contest, poets submitted videos of themselves reading their poems, which were posted on the library’s YouTube page.

Communications and journalism professor Lisa Couch said the joint effort between the different departments was to “highlight and celebrate student voices.”

“One of the reasons I like to help coordinate contests like this is that it helps students actually discover their voices, and that’s a really powerful thing,” she said.

Winners of the poetry contest will be announced live at the Coffeehouse. A panel of judges will choose the Grand Prize winner and Runner Up, as well as the Best Performance, which will be based on the video submission with creativity, sound quality, and reading quality. 

Judging the contest are librarian Alicia Diaz, award-winning Glacier editor-in-chief Mariah Trujillo, and literature professor Carey Millsap-Spears, who will read some of her own poetry to kick off the event.

Poems submitted this year showcase each student’s voice, covering topics ranging from mental health to perfection and even conformity. Fifteen poems were submitted this year, compared to 10 last year.

One change the judges have made this year is having a Student Choice Award, which will allow audience members to have their voices heard. Last year, some audience members had a different favorite than the judges.

“It was a special moment last year because students who hadn’t entered the contest could log in and listen to the poets read,” Couch said. “Some of my students felt as if they really connected to what the poets were saying.”

This free live event is open to the public. The event will take place via WebEx. You can register here for the event.