From a competitive field of more than 365,000 students nationwide, 16-year-old Youssef Biaz of Auburn, Ala., received the title of 2011 Poetry Out Loud National Champion at the National Finals held in Washington, D.C. on April 29.  With his achievement, he also receives a $20,000 award and his high school, Auburn High School, will receive a $500 stipend for the purchase of poetry books. Biaz was among nine finalists and 53 state champions from around the country who participated in the sixth national poetry recitation contest, sponsored by the National Arts Endowment and the Poetry Foundation.

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Laura Ascione

Laura Ascione is the Managing Editor, Content Services at eSchool Media. She is a graduate of the University of Maryland's prestigious Philip Merrill College of Journalism. Find Laura on Twitter: @eSN_Laura