New York, NY (November 30, 2020)— The Academy of American Poets is pleased to announce that submissions are being accepted for the 2021 Inaugural Poem Contest for Students beginning today, November 30, through December 30, 2020. Three students’ poems will be selected by this year’s judge, Presidential Inaugural Poet and the Academy of American Poets Education Ambassador Richard Blanco. The winning poems will be featured on and in American Poets magazine, and—thanks to an anonymous donor who has doubled the prize money—the first place-winning student will now receive $1,000, second place will receive $600, and third place will receive $300. 

Students living in the United States, U.S. Territories, or Tribal Nations who are 18 years old or under are invited to study the five Inaugural poets and poems throughout American history as part of the 2021 Inaugural Poem Project and to submit their own work to be considered for the 2021 Inaugural Poem Contest. 

For more information including eligibility requirements and guidelines, and for additional resources to assist with the project, visit:

To submit to the contest, visit:

About the Academy of American Poets

The Academy of American Poets is the nation’s leading champion of poets and poetry with supporters in all fifty states. Founded in 1934, the organization annually awards more funds to individual poets than any other organization through its prize program, giving a total of $1,250,000 to more than 200 poets at various stages of their careers. The Academy also produces, the world’s largest publicly funded website for poets and poetry; originated and organizes National Poetry Month; publishes the popular Poem-a-Day series and American Poets magazine; provides award-winning resources to K–12 educators, including the Teach This Poem series; hosts an annual series of poetry readings and special events; and coordinates a national Poetry Coalition working together to promote the value poets bring to the country’s culture. This year, in response to the global health crisis, the organization joined six other national organizations to launch Artist Relief, a multidisciplinary coalition of arts grantmakers and a consortium of foundations working to provide resources and funding to the country’s individual poets, writers, and artists who are impacted by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.