Youth Poet Laureate

The Hawai‘i Youth Poet Laureate Fellowship is a program of the Maui Arts & Cultural Center in partnership with Urban Word. This fellowship will build youths’ skills in literary excellence, civic engagement, and social impact. During the fellowship, students, ages 10-19 will apply to become the Youth Poet Laureate of Hawai‘i!

YPL Hawaii Logo_Multi-Color.png

Youth Poet Laureate

We will be hosting community workshops via zoom during after school hours beginning in February, please sign up here if you are interested in learning more

A Look Back at 2020-2021

Photos: Bryan Berkowitz

Lua Bowman is the 2021 Hawaii Youth Poet Laureate, the first appointed in the history of Hawaii. At Punahou School, she is Senior Vice President of Punahou’s Black Student Union and takes part in a cohort in the Shanti Fellows Program. As an avid advocate in wanting to ensure the voices of students of color at her school are heard, she has participated in leadership conferences such as SDLC (Student Diversity Leadership Conference) and the 2021 Hawai’i DEI (Shanti Alliance) Conference. Lua is presently a senior at Punahou School and hopes to continue utilizing poetry as an outlet that enables Black Americans, like herself, to take charge of their image and their Black identity as a pathway to Black liberation. 

Lua Bowman

Hawai'i's 1st

Youth Poet Laureate

Lua Bowman


Youth Poet Laureate Finalists

Anabella Charles
Korion Williams
Harley Wolters
Lyric Ono
Mika Hiroi

Headshot unavailable 

Julia Leong, Shea Noland, Rachel Waggoner, Eliana Pimentel
MACC Youth Poet Laureate 5-16-2021_029_web_berkowitz
press to zoom
MACC Youth Poet Laureate 5-16-2021_030_web_berkowitz
press to zoom
Ittai Wong

Le Jardin

Travis Thompson

Youth Speaks Hawai'i
Pacific Tongues

Youth Poet Laureate Instructors/ Mentors

Featured Judges

Camea Davis, PhD.- National Director of Youth Poet Laureate Program 

Joy Harjo- 23rd United States Poet Laureate 

Brandy McDougall- University of Hawai'i

Meera Dasgupta- Youth Poet Laureate 

Photos: Bryan Berkowitz

Video: Markus Kuenzel- MACC

Audio: Harrison Tatik- MACC