SUNY Geneseo to Feature Local Elementary and Middle School Students' Visions of Peace

GENESEO, N.Y. - The State University of New York at Geneseo's Department of English will recognize the winners of its 5th annual Genesee Valley Peace Poetry Contest May 13 at 7 p.m. in Wadsworth Auditorium on campus. The department sponsored the contest for kindergarten through 8th grade students from 30 area school districts in the Genesee Valley.

The department received more than 500 poems from which 70 winners were selected. The winners have been invited to read their poems at the event, which is free and open to the public.

The contest was founded by Rob Doggett, associate professor of English at Geneseo. He said the contest focuses on elementary and middle school students because "young people need a stable, nurturing and peaceful environment to flourish. Unfortunately, a lot of young people aren't given the chance to find that peaceful environment because they live amid conflict and sometimes, as is the case with many young people in the United States, they simply aren't given the chance to think about peace, about the things that make them happy, content, and loved," he said.

Doggett said the contest is about helping students to develop their own creative skills.

"I have often found that students who win this contest are often the ones who don't always get "A's" in their classes," said Doggett. "But I think that's great: a lot of students who do well get used to success. I honestly feel that this contest can help change the lives of students because it helps them to discover a talent that they didn't know they had."

More information is available about the contest by calling (585) 245-2473.

Media Contact:
David Irwin
Media Relations Manager
(585) 245-5516
Irwin@geneseo.edu