Local student awarded highest honor for teen poets, meets first lady

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Photo courtesy of Park Tudor

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(September 19, 2014) – A local student was honored as a National Student Poet at the White House on Thursday.

Weston Clark, a 16-year-old sophomore at Park Tudor School in Indianapolis was appointed by The President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities as one of five teen poets in the third annual class of the National Student Poets Program (NSPP).

This is the nation’s highest honor for teen poets presenting original work.

The National Student Poets will implement community service projects in their respective regions, which in the past have reached diverse audiences such as military children, patients at a children’s hospital, nursing home residents with Alzheimer’s disease, and homeless youth, among others.

By doing so, they demonstrate the essential role of writing and the arts in academic and personal success to audiences of all ages.

On Thursday, the 2014 class began their year of service with a reading hosted by First Lady Michelle Obama in the Blue Room of the White House.

Mrs. Obama congratulated the National Student Poets, noting, “With this award, we celebrate the exceptional creativity, dedication, and promise of the young poets we honor today.

Clark has been writing poetry since he was in first grade and has continued to develop his style into free verse.

Through his writing, Clark tries to evoke emotions in the reader and he strongly agrees with Maya Angelou’s philosophy: “People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

NSPP is a signature initiative of the President’s Committee in partnership with the Institute of Museum and Library Services and the nonprofit Alliance for Young Artists & Writers, the administer of the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards, which are the exclusive pathway to being considered for NSPP.

To learn more about the National Student Poets Program, visit www.artandwriting.org/nspp.

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