Richard Benvenuto High School Poetry Competition

and

Tom Samet High School Fiction Competition

The 2018 Benvenuto High School Poetry and Samet High School Fiction Competition winners (Left to right):  Elizabeth Shorkey (3rd, Fiction); Robert Bond (Honorable Mention, Fiction); Miracle Thornton (2nd, Poetry); Amelie Randall (3rd, Poetry); Athena Nassar (2nd, Fiction); Ash Freeman (1st & Honorable Mention, Poetry); Bianca Layog (1st, Fiction)

Each fall, the RCAH Center for Poetry holds the Richard Benvenuto High School Poetry Competition, with prize donated by Barry Gross in memory of his dear classmate, colleague, and friend Richard Benvenuto.

New in 2017 is the Tom Samet High School Fiction Competition, with prize donated by Barry Gross in memory of his esteemed friend Tom Samet.

 

E-mail us at cpoetry@msu.edu to register your school on our mailing list. The call for entries for the 2019 competition will be mailed to high schools in September 2019. The competition is open to all students who attend a Michigan high school.

About Richard Benvenuto

Richard Ercole Benvenuto taught in the English Department at Michigan State University for 20 years. From his office in Morrill Hall he conducted grad student seminars and advised students on the best paths for their lives. He loved teaching and was a published scholar of Victorian Literature.  At the time of his death, Indiana University dedicated an issue of Victorian Studies in his honor. He published two biographies, one on Emily Bronte and the other on Amy Lowell. His next book would have been on Oscar Wilde. As a young grad student he was awarded a Woodrow Wilson Fellowship, which he used to pursue an MFA in Creative Writing at Hollins College, Virginia. At Hollins College, he worked under William Golding, author of Lord of the Flies. Richard played music and wrote poetry throughout his life. He was married for 27 years to his wife, Joyce and has three children and four grandchildren.

About Tom Samet

Tom Samet majored in English at Michigan State University and decided that he wanted to become an English professor. He graduated with High Honors, got a Ph.D in English and American Literature from Brown, and had a varied and  satisfying academic career which was cut tragically short by his death at age 52.

2018 Winners

Congratulations to all of our participants! To read the winning entries, click their titles, below.

 

 

Benvenuto Poetry Prize Winners                                                        Samet Fiction Prize Winners

 

First Place: Ash Freeman                                                                                                                First Place: Bianca Layog

High School: Interlochen Arts Academy                                                                                  High School: Interlochen Arts Academy

Year in School: Senior                                                                                                                      Year in School: Sophomore

Sponsoring Teacher: Brittany Cavallaro                                                                                 Sponsoring Teacher: Joe Sacksteder

Title of Poem:  Under Ursa Minor                                                                                             Title of Story: Happy Birthday

 

 

Second Place: Miracle Thornton                                                                                                  Second Place:  Athena Nassar

High School: Interlochen Arts Academy                                                                                   High School: Interlochen Arts Academy

Year In School: Junior                                                                                                                      Year in School:  Senior

Sponsoring Teacher: Brittany Cavallaro                                                                                  Sponsoring Teacher: Mika Perrine

Title of Poem: my mother's family founded liberia                                                        Title of Story: Confessions of a Dis mem ber ed Ragdoll

                                 (or so she likes to tell me)      

 

 

Third Place: Amelie Randall                                                                                                           Third Place: Elizabeth Shorkey

High School: Interlochen Arts Academy                                                                                   High School: Saginaw Arts and Sciences Academy

Year In School: Sophomore                                                                                                           Year in School: Junior

Sponsoring Teacher: Mika Perrine                                                                                             Sponsoring Teacher: Karen Horwath

Title of Poem: When the Sky Splits                                                                                          Title of Story: Genesis in Progress

 

 

Honorable Mention: Ash Freeman                                                                                              Honorable Mention: Robert Bond

School: Interlochen Arts Academy                                                                                               School: Saginaw Arts and Sciences Academy

Year in School: Senior                                                                                                                       Year in School: Sophomore

Sponsoring Teacher: Brittany Cavallaro                                                                                  Sponsoring Teacher: Jared Morningstar

Title of Poem: Are We the Stars Between Orion and His Belt?                                   Title of Story: Realists, Be Warned

 

 

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