For the past nine years, Stockton University Instructor Emari DiGiorgio has offered a course titled "Why Poetry Matters" at Stockton University. It's open to undergraduate juniors and seniors of all majors, they study contemporary poetry, how poetry can be used as an agent of change (socially/politically/medically), and the ways in which poetry has been taught to foster a love of language and writing.
Undergraduates, working in pairs or small groups, teach poetry one day a week (for 60 minutes) for six weeks at local schools, aftercare programs, youth rehabilitation centers, and youth homeless shelters.
They've worked with a range of community partners. This semester, we're working to provide writing workshops at Covenant House (Atlantic City), Southern Residential Group Home (Egg Harbor City), Egg Harbor Township High School (Egg Harbor Township), Oakcrest High School (Mays Landing), and the Police Athletic League (Atlantic City) and now Princess, Inc. has been added to their roster.
Ultimately we are excited about this opportunity for several reasons: it continues to foster our mission to expose our girls to collegiate experiences, the huge benefit to them as growing writers, will increase their inter/intra-personal skills, help them with becoming abstract thinkers, poetry is cathartic--so it will also help a therapeutic method of dealing with personal issues through writing as an art and so much more!