Topeka, Kan. – Washburn University Upward Bound participants and Topeka High School sophomores Christa Dickman and Rehabiah Williamson won prizes in the Sunflower Poetry Society of Kansas' 2024 Voice of Tomorrow Poetry Contest. Dickman was awarded first place and a $300 prize, and Williamson received an honorable mention and a $50 prize.

      Washburn Upward Bound Program Director Shelley Bearman said, "Upward Bound staff encouraged all participants to submit entries and many expressed interest in sharing their poems. We are so proud of their bravery in sharing their writings. Please join me in congratulating both of our Topeka High School winners."

     Upward Bound is a federal TRIO program designed to assist high school students with developing the skills they need to achieve their personal, academic and career goals and encourages experiences and growth opportunities in preparation for college enrollment. Washburn Upward Bound staff partner with students through high school, and into post-secondary education.

     The Sunflower Poetry Society of Kansas is a diverse and all-inclusive group dedicated to the promotion of poetry, sharing of poetry, mutual mentorship, encouragement, creative freedom and poetic expression in a supportive environment that embraces poets and poetry aficionados of all skill levels in both written and performance forms.

      For more information about Washburn University’s Upward Bound program, visit

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For further information, contact:
Joy Bailes
Director of Internal Communications and Brand Management
Office: 785-670-2153
Cell: 785-230-1648


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