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Former U.S. Poet Laureate To Speak At Penn State September 29

Natasha Trethewey, a former U.S. Poet Laureate, will give a reading at 6 p.m. on September 29 in the Freeman Auditorium in the HUB. Trethewey will be this year’s Emily Dickinson Lecturer.

Trethewey served as the U.S. Poet Laureate for two terms from 2012 to 2014. Throughout her career, Trethewey has published five different poetry collections over more than 20 years, along with a nonfiction book and a memoir.

Trethewey has many awards and recognitions to her name. She has received fellowships with the Academy of American Poets, the Guggenheim Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts, among others. Her 2006 poetry collection “Native Guard” was the winner of the Pulitzer Prize.

Trethewey has been a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences since 2012 and served four years (2012-2016) as poet laureate of Mississippi. Her most recent poetry collection was published in 2018. Trethewey is currently a professor in the Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences at Northwestern University.

During her tenure as U.S. Poet Laureate, Trethewey created a series on PBS called “Where Poetry Lives.” She traveled across the country and explored many issues that we face through the lens of poetry and literature.

The annual Emily Dickinson Lecture is supported by the Penn State Department of English and Penn State alumni George and Barbara Kelly.

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About the Author

Haylee Yocum

Haylee is a junior in the Schreyer Honors College studying immunology and infectious disease. She is from Mifflintown, PA, a tiny town south of State College. She is a coffee addict, loves Taylor Swift, and can't wait to go to a concert again. Any questions can be directed to @hayleeq8 on Twitter or emailed to

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