Orlando Saa Poetry Recitation Contest


The 37th Annual Dr. Orlando E. Saa Poetry Recitation Contest will be held in University Commons at William Paterson University of New Jersey on Tuesday, May 19th, 2020, starting at 9.00am.

Some 700 plus northern New Jersey area high school students from about 50 school districts are scheduled to participate this year, competing in one of the 8 language offered. They are: Arabic, Chinese, ESL, French, Italian, Korean, Japanese and Spanish. Prizes will be awarded for best students in the Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced, and Native categories.

The Dr. Orlando E. Saa Poetry Recitation Contest started back in 1982 as an offshoot of the Foreign Language Collaborative Program, coordinated by Dr. Claudia Gaudianii, now a President on an Institution of Higher Education in Connecticut. This program also sponsored most qualified students for a scholarship to study their language of specialization in a country of their choice (France, Germany, Italy, Spain, etc). Over 100 instructors participated in a 5 year period. The program was also responsible for having language instructors from different institutions in New Jersey work together in a collaborative effort to improve their offering. The former Jersey City State College and William Paterson College worked together in this effort.

 In the first few years of the program, there were more than a dozen languages being offered.     

 The program is named after the first program coordinator, Dr. Orlando E. Saa, who passed away a few years back.

For more information on the poetry contest contact SAApoetry@wpunj.edu.