English Department to Recognize K-8th Grade Peace Poetry Contest Winners May 11

GENESEO, N.Y. – SUNY Geneseo's Department of English will recognize the winners of the Genesee Valley Peace Poetry Contest May 11 at 3 p.m. in Wadsworth Auditorium on campus. The department sponsored the contest for kindergarten through 8th grade students from 19 area school districts in the Genesee Valley.

The department received more than 1,000 poems from which 80 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, 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 aren’t necessarily the ones who always get straight ‘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.

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