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a group of students stand together outside. One student holds a Poetry Out Loud sign over her head.

The 2019 Poetry Out Loud national finalists before the competition begins. Clockwise from top left: Massachusetts State Champion Rose E. Hansen, Maine State Champion João Rodrigues Victor, Illinois State Champion Scottlynn Ernestine Ballard, South Dakota State Champion Gage Gramlick, Kansas State Champion Khadija Ceesay, Minnesota State Champion Isabella Callery, Vermont State Champion Vera Escaja-Heiss, Hawaii State Champion Maggie Odom, and Georgia State Champion Alejandro J. Campo.