inspiring high school students through the spoken word


The 19th annual Nevada Poetry Out Loud state competition will convene in person on Saturday, March 9, 2024 at the Pioneer Center for Performing Arts in Reno, NV.  Participants from 6 counties will compete to represent Nevada at the National Finals in Washington DC.

Congrats to the 2024 Nevada finals winner!

Rayann Hijazi, washoe county

Rayann Hijazi is a poet and knows it. She has loved reading and writing poetry for as long she can remember. English has always been Rayann’s favorite subject, and Poetry Out Loud has allowed her to conquer her fear of public speaking and step into a spotlight doing something she loves. Currently, she is exploring different career paths, joining clubs, and having fun with the last couple of years in high school. Rayann wants to be the absolute best person she can be and have experiences that will last a lifetime. She is super excited to be participating in Poetry Out Loud. She would like to thank her mom, Abeer Hijazi, her dad Ramzi Hijazi, her English teacher, Wesley Lydon and friends Sahara and Jessie.

“I think being fearless is having fears but jumping anyway.” -Taylor Swift


carson city

Nasia Perkins

Nasia Perkins is a 15-year-old African American who lives with her two younger brothers. She is in numerous extracurriculars such as National Honor Society, Speech and Debate and Future Business Leaders of America. She has always wanted to represent the underrepresented, whether it is about the wage gap, ethnicity, or orientation. Nasia is a firm believer in sharing with others what is commonly ignored and spreading more awareness. Poetry, in particular, is a beautiful way to express that and this is what led her here.


Kyara Hernandez-Duarte

Kyara Hernandez-Duarte is a junior at Elko High School. Throughout her time in high school she’s been involved in FBLA, National Honor Society, Key Club, Theatre, piano lessons, and Speech and Debate. Through Speech and Debate, she found her love for public speaking and decided to carry that over to Poetry Out Loud. She has competed in Poetry Out Loud for the past two years. Kyara is excited to compete at the state level this year and would like to thank her teachers Mrs. Voth, Ms. Moon, Mr. Wallek, her parents, Francisco Hernandez & Alba Duarte, as well as her best friend, Danica Evans, for their support and guidance throughout this experience.


Clark County

Marianne Ocampo

Marianne Ocampo is a senior at East Career and Technical Academy in Las Vegas. She enjoys music and spending time with her friends. Marianne has always had a great appreciation for the arts, but poetry was something she struggled with. However, this contest has provided her with the opportunity to truly understand and admire the art of poetry. She would like to thank her communications teacher, Daren Stewart, her mom, Mary Rose Ocampo, her father, Rex Ocampo, and her two best friends, Jayshawn Lockheart and Amerie Burns.

Lyon County

Yosselin Vazquez Madera

Yosselin Vazquez Madera is a junior at Yerington High School. She is currently in the Jump-Start program for Western Nevada College, which is provided at Yerington High School. Yosselin enjoys volunteering and being involved in many clubs. She loves to spend most of her time reading, drawing, listening to music, spending time with family and going on walks. After high school, she plans to become either a Private Investigator or a forensic scientist. Yosselin is thrilled to have this opportunity to do POL. She would like to thank her English teacher, Amanda Aldridge, her mom, Lorena Madera, her dad, Alejandro Vazquez, her advisory teacher, Jennifer Smith, and her best friend (aka dog), Bonbom.

Storey County

Mariah Mavity

Mariah Mavity is a senior at Virginia City High School, a small school between Reno and Carson City. She has two younger siblings, a brother who is 13 and a sister who is 11. Mariah is originally from Utah and that is where most of her family is. Some things she enjoys are golfing, painting, fashion, traveling, and spending time with family and friends. She is planning to go to the University of Nevada, Reno, where she will study Business and hopefully go into Fashion marketing. She would like to thank her teacher, Lindsey Wells.

Focusing on our rich literary heritage and contemporary life through memorization and performance of classic and contemporary poetry, Nevada Poetry Out Loud is a program of the Nevada Arts Council, presented in partnership with National Endowment for the Arts, The Poetry Foundation, Nevada Department of Tourism and Cultural Affairs, Nevada Department of Education, and Nevada School Districts.



Tony Manfredi, Arts Learning Specialist & POL State Coordinator, at tmanfredi@nevadaculture.org or call 775.297.5955.