National Student Poet is an appointment given annually to only five teens across the US; Lylla Younes of Alexandria, La. was chosen from 8,000 applicants by the President's Committee on the Arts and Humanities.
Lylla Younes, of Alexandria, La.,grew up in a house filled with poetry. There were no poets at home, but her dad, Maan Younes, is an avid reader of poetry. Each Friday night and some Saturdays, he gathered Lylla, her brother Abraham, and his wife Sue to read poetry.
The words flowed forth and stuck with Lylla and Abraham, both of whom are now award-winning creative writers.
Lylla, 17, is now a National Student Poet appointed by the President's Committee on the Arts and Humanities, the Institute of Museum and Library Services and the Alliance for Young Artists and Writers. She and four other teens from across the nation were chosen from 8,000 applicants.
"I'm proud, but I'm humbled," said Lylla's mother, Mrs. Younes.
She talked in depth about Lylla's talent, and attributes it mainly to her family's love of the written word.
"I don't know where she gets it from," Mrs. Younes said. "My sister is a songwriter/singer. My late sister was a writer. But, we are big readers."