Alabama poet laureate delivers keynote address at Stillman Thursday

Poet Laureate

By WVUA 23 News Reporter Elise Anzaldua

Alabama State Poet Laureate Ashley Jones imparted words of wisdom in Tuscaloosa Thursday, delivering the keynote address for Stillman College’s spring convocation.

Jones is the youngest and first Black poet laureate in state history, and is known for writing about her experiences in the state and across the nation.

“It’s really exciting to be asked to speak to students,” Jones said. “I never really thought growing up that anybody would want little old me to come and talk to a whole bunch of students, but I’m excited that I can represent the state as poet laureate and hopefully encourage students on their way as they continue their studies.”

Jones became Alabama’s official State Poet Laureate in August 2021.

In her keynote address, Jones said she wants to give students something to hold on to for the incoming semester.

“I would want them to think about perseverance and what it means to stick something out until the end,” she said. “They’re in college, so sticking that out is hard enough, and in life there are a lot of things you have to stick to to see them to completion so hopefully that’s what they leave with today.”

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