WHATCHUGOT? CUPSI Slam Team Announced

Wednesday night, Penn State Writers Organized to Represent Diverse Stories, W.O.R.D.S, held their finale to their slam series in the Hub-Robeson Center’s Heritage Hall. As each contender inched closer and closer to the ultimate goal, joining this year’s CUPSI team in Chicago, they would first have to overcome the three eliminating rounds that stood in their way. This will be Penn State W.O.R.D.S  second time participating in the highly competitive CUPSI competition in this coming year.

As the finale began, Mildred Williams, the W.O.R.D.S adviser stated that the CUPSI competition will take place in Chicago, Illinois. A trip to this competition will be very expensive for the upcoming team, so the W.O.R.D.S organization had also turned this event into a fundraiser as they sold t-shirts for $10 and accepted any donation that could be made.

Out of the gate these performers came out ready to leave a mark on the audience. Being in the presence of so many talented artist was breathe taking. Audience member RiChai Johnson, a sophomore , was so captivated by the performances.

“That was so deep I could feel the tears building up,” she said as David Gaines concluded his performance dedicated to his sister.

Every artist commanded the attention of the audience as they stepped towards the mic in a way that was unique ever time. The night was full of laughter, jaw dropping, and tear jerking moments. What made it so special was that  not one poem was the same. The topics ranged from sexual abuse, reactions about the election, and love affairs. The artist were able to dig deep inside  and tell personal stories that were also relatable to their audience.

Afterward, all the performers gathered on the stage as the top six and CUPSI team was announced.

The following four will be going to Chicago for the CUPSI competition:

  1. David Gaines
  2. Davon Clark
  3. Abby Kennedy
  4. Rabiyatu Jalloh

Rabiyatu Jalloh, a junior and one of the four chosen to go to the competition, said “I am so excited and blessed to be going back to CUPSI…all the hard work I put in really paid off and I’m just so proud of myself.” Since this will be W.O.R.D.S second time competing they will be more prepared for the competition.

Williams, their adviser, said “I’m so excited that they have a chance to go back and win… they know how to work together and how the competition is set up, so I am confident that they will get this win.”

If you are interesting in watching these poet perform check out their YouTube channel where they have prior performances as well the performances from the slam series.

Photo Credit: Kevin Abrokwah