Schaumburg High School Poetry Club Brings Creative Work to Competitions and the Community

The Poetry Club completes working on their poetry with Lamar Jorden and Kevin Coval during Arts Alive week.  Lamar is also a subject of the Louder Than a Bomb documentary, and Kevin is the founder of the event.

The Poetry Club completes working on their poetry with Lamar Jorden and Kevin Coval during Arts Alive week. Lamar is also a subject of the Louder Than a Bomb documentary, and Kevin is the founder of the event.

Students in Schaumburg High School’s poetry club are starting to take their creative work outside of District 211 walls and into the community. However, the group of 40 students are agreeing that it’s not competing that’s necessarily important, but the connections they are growing with their peers.

Most recently, three students competed in the West Chicago Poetry Slam to compete as individual writers, and one student won. The group is coming off of that success to prepare for its first open mic night taking place on Feb. 14 at Cup & Vine in Schaumburg, Ill., as well as other upcoming competitions.

“It started as this organic club made from students with an interest in poetry, and has evolved into a club of kids who are writing, sharing, and is the greatest anti-bullying tool we have now,” said Schaumburg High School English teacher Kelly Lagioia.  “I have students in my club who are really dealing with things outside of school and we have become this very beautiful family that comes together to share our stories. It is a way to show students that they are not alone.”

Students and members of the SHS Poetry Club Amber Frost, Jessica Watson, and Sam Sylverne competed in the West Chicago Poetry Slam. Sylverne, who won the competition, said this was a great way to challenge themselves as writers and to gain motivation to write new pieces and get ready for an event called “Louder Than a Bomb,” which is which is the largest teen poetry slam in the world and is based in Chicago.

“We did all of this together, and we will do ‘Louder Than a Bomb’ together as well,” Sam said. “It’s all about the poetry. I was nervous because it was my first judged poetry slam but when they say, ‘the point is not the points, it’s the poetry,’ they mean it. It’s true. Nobody comes to win, and if they do, they don’t belong with us.”

Students who attended the West Chicago Poetry Slam. Each of the three competitors advanced to finals, and one was named the winner.

Students who attended the West Chicago Poetry Slam. Each of the three competitors advanced to finals, and one was named the winner.

The poetry club at SHS is in its second year and has completely taken off since it started. The club has roughly 40 members, and is working on sharing and completing work before “Louder Than a Bomb.”  Both Amber and Jessica agree this group has helped them grow as writers and also create an incredible support system outside of the classroom.

“I’m in poetry club because I love to write, inspire other people and share my experiences with others that may be struggling,” Amber said. “ I’m getting a lot of help and support being in poetry club, with my writing and life in general. It gives me hope and lets me know there are people just like me going through the same things right in my school.”

Jessica agreed and emphasized the importance of poetry club in her development as a writer and in her personal life.

“Poetry club has really let me express myself creatively, and it’s made me realize that writing is such an important outlet for my feelings and experiences,” she said. “Through poetry club, I’ve also found an amazing new group of friends. I’ve found people who not only share my love of poetry, but who I can also tell anything to, and that’s so important.”

SHS St. Baldrick’s Success

Upon hearing the sound of hair clippers pressed to her head, sophomore Krystal Vezzetti excitedly clutched a sign that read $1,293, the amount she personally fundraised as she smiled and laughed in disbelief while cheap jerseys locks of Интерьер her hair fell to the ground and were placed in a bag, culminating to nothing but skin.

And she wasn’t alone.

St. Baldrick's Participants

SHS St. Baldrick's participants.

More than 170 students and faculty at Schaumburg High School participated in the annual St. Baldrick’s event by raising funds for children’s cancer cheap nba jerseys research presents and shaving their heads at a pep assembly on March 22. SHS raised more than $103,000 for the organization this year.

“I did this event because my grandpa died of cancer before I was born, and I never got to meet him,” Vezzetti said. “I just really wanted to make a difference in children’s lives. If I can make one little girl feel pretty with my hair, then that makes all of this worthwhile.”

Students who raised more than $500, and faculty members more than $1,000, had their heads shaved during the pep assembly, and were introduced to the packed auditorium during the event. All participants that raised more than $25 had their heads shaved during lunch hours.

St. Baldrick's participant

Superintendent of Schools Nancy Robb poses with Associate Superintendent for Administrative Services Dan Cates after he participated in the event.

The St. Baldrick’s event started at SHS in 2010 after SHS graduate John Knudson, a student who battled cancer since the age of 13, became involved in the organization and helped start the first St. Baldrick’s event at the school. On his St. Baldrick’s profile page, he said: “With little to look forward to, my friends, our school social worker Mrs. Haas and Beitrag I decided to start a St. Baldrick’s event at SHS. As soon as everything was approved, the event took off and before anyone could realize it, the entire school had an energy that I don’t think anyone could explain. For the first time for me, SHS felt like a real community of people who cared about each other.”

And the tradition Hello continues even after he’s left SHS. Knudson, who is in remission, is a student at the University of Illinois and is studying to become a doctor. He also was at this year’s event, and humbly stood up in the crowd when introduced during the assembly.

Participant getting hair shaved

Student Lauren De Carlo gets her head shaved during the pep assembly.

The event, which brought the cheap jerseys entire community together for one cause, kept everyone’s spirits high. One student, freshman and participant Amber Frost, said she did it for all the cheap nfl jerseys people wholesale mlb jerseys who are fighting cancer through her church.

“I thought it was a really great idea to help the kids out with my hair. I’m not doing anything with it, and mine will grow back, but theirs won’t. I feel pretty awesome right now, and the breeze feels nice, too,” she laughed.

Although this year’s successful event is over, participants continue to look toward the future.

“I wanted to do it in my grandpa’s honor, and the honor of all the children in the world,” said senior and St. Baldrick’s participant gesundes Ben Brito after shaving his head. “For all the children out there, I hope you are doing well and that you are fighting. Keep fighting and never give up, let’s beat cancer together.”

For more information on the St. Baldrick’s organization, click here.