what is america’s best college poet?

America’s Best College Poet is a nationwide search for the best college or university undergraduate poet in the country. Watch as the top bards from campuses across the United States battle it out for a cash prize and bragging rights. Determined by audience vote and the celebrity judges (professional touring poets and stars of the college circuit), top vote-getters from preliminary rounds will meet in the Grand Slam Finale where only one poet will walk away with the title.

All poets competing in the national competition will be invited to Champ Camp, a unique chance to study and be mentored by the celebrity judges. During Champ Camp, poets will learn the tricks of the trade from some of the most successful and award-winning poets of today.

Spots are limited, so be sure to sign up now. The buy-in price to participate is $750 per school.

how it works:

  • Round one is coordinated on your campus – in-person or virtually – whatever that may mean for you! Your winner needs to be reported to Bass/Schuler by September 25, 2020.
  • If you want one of the celebrity judges to virtually host your first-round event, they are offering a discounted rate of $500 to do so.
  • The additional rounds will be conducted virtually so your students can compete against poets from across the country! They will also be invited to a secret Facebook group where they can interact and network with their peers.
  • Student poets will recite their best original piece(s) live and voting will occur.
  • The semi-final round will lead to 12 finalists who will each get one-on-one coaching from a celebrity judge before the final event.
  • The winner will be chosen by the celebrity judges and awarded the cash prize of $1500 (or non-cash equivalent) plus the title of America’s Best College Poet 2020.

event timeline:

  • 8/31: School Registration closes
  • BY 9/25: Individual school winners sent to Bass/Schuler Entertainment
  • 9/28-10/2: CHAMP CAMP
  • 10/4: Virtual Student Competition
  • 10/11: Virtual Student Competition
  • 10/18: Semi-Finals
  • 10/25: Finals and Winner Announced

event return on investment:

It’s so much more than just an open mic!  In addition, your buy in gets you:

  • Access to CHAMP CAMP for any interested student from your participating institution––a full week of poetry and performance workshops put on by our celebrity judges.
  • Access to a discounted rate of just $500 for one of our 5 celebrity judges to help coordinate and host (virtually) your first-round event.
  • A spot, for your first-round winner, in the nationwide competition, in which your school’s poet will compete against the best poets from across the country (virtually).
  • The chance for your first-round winner to be one of the final 12 to work one-on-one in an immersive mentorship session with one of the celebrity judges.
  • The chance for your first-round winner to win the title of America’s Best College Poet and a cash prize of $1,500 (or equivalent).
  • In addition to your first round event, access to 4 more weeks of programming throughout the month of October – Sunday Night Poetry events with student poets from across the country as well as performances from the celebrity judges.

get started with your booking!


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