Student Contests

Print Friendly


As of September 1, 2017, WE ARE ACCEPTING SUBMISSIONS for student poets from 3rd grade to university undergraduates attending schools in North Carolina.  To download an entry form, click here.

All entries must be postmarked by February 15, 2018.

Each winning student poem will be published in the NC Poetry Society’s annual Pinesong anthology, which features all of the contest winners and their poems.   For more information about current and past issues of Pinesong, click here.

1st Place winners will receive a trophy, a $30 check, an NCPS award certificate, and a free copy of Pinesong.

2nd Place winners receive $20, an NCPS award certificate, and a free copy of Pinesong.

3rd Place winners receive $10, an NCPS award certificate, and a free copy of Pinesong.

Honorable Mention winners (up to three per contest) are also chosen. These winners receive an NCPS award certificate and a free copy of Pinesong.

What are the contest categories?

The Travis Tuck Jordan Award
Endowed by Dorothy and Oscar Pederson

  • for students in Grades 3 — 5.

The Joan Scott Memorial Award
Endowed by contributions in memory of Joan Scott and by the Board of the NC Poetry Society

  • for poems about the environment
  • for students in Grades 3 — 8.

The Mary Chilton Award
Sponsored by Tori Reynolds

  • for students in Grades 6 — 8.

The Sherry Pruitt Award
Endowed by Gail Peck

  • for students in Grades 9 — Undergraduate.

All poems may be in any form, but may not exceed 32 lines per poem, including line breaks within the poem.  No copies will be returned.

Please DO NOT add pictures or images with your poem.  Poems do not need to be centered on the page; they can be written flush left.


  • All poem entries for student contests are FREE.
  • Students may submit one different poem to each category for which they are eligible.
  • Send two typed copies of each poem on sheets of 8.5″ by 11″ paper, in 12-point type using Times New Roman font.  DO NOT put your name or address on these copies.  In the upper left corner of each copy, type the name of the contest category.
  • On a separate piece of paper, type: 1) name of the contest category and title of the poem; 2) your name, home address, telephone number, and e-mail address; and 3) the name of your school, your grade, teacher’s name and e-mail address, school address and telephone number.
  • Your teacher must sign this piece of paper before you send it with the poems, and you must sign this paper and write in your hand-writing: “I pledge that this is my original poem.”
  • Entries must be postmarked no later than February 15, 2018.

Where do I mail my contest entries?

Mail your entries to:

Michael Beadle
NCPS Student Contest Coordinator
7316 Hilhenge Court, Apt. 7
Raleigh, NC 27615

If you have any questions, you may email the contest coordinator.

When will I know if I have won an award?

Winners will be notified in March 2017. Winners will also be invited to our Awards Day meeting, which will be on Saturday, May 27, 2017, at the Weymouth Center for the Arts in Southern Pines, NC.

What about other poetry opportunities?

Winners and honorable mentions in college, high school, or middle school are invited to apply to become Student Poets in the Gilbert-Chappell Distinguished Poet Series.

We look forward to receiving your fabulous poems.  

Happy writing and good luck!