Princeton University Professor Named 22nd U.S. Poet Laureate[VIDEO]By Khaleb Skye A. Cruz, UniversityHerald Reporter
Princeton University professor Tracy K. Smith is the 22nd U.S. Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry. The school administration announced the good news on Wednesday.
According to Princeton University, Smith will grace the Library of Congress's annual literary season with an excerpt of her work. The event will be held at the Coolidge Auditorium this coming fall. For the record, she is teaching creative writing in the Lewis Center for the Arts.
Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden said in earlier interviews that Smith's works "travel the world and takes on its voices". Other than that, they bring "history and memory to life" and call on the power of literature, science, religion, as well as pop culture. All in all, Smith allowed her readers to better understand what makes them most human.
For his part, University President Christopher L. Eisgruber labelled Smith is a "gifted" writer. He also acknowledged that Princeton University is fortunate to have her as a teacher. Eisgruber is very much delighted with Smith's newest achievement.
Per the Princeton Patch, Smith also won the Pulitzer Prize for poetry for "Life on Mars" in 2012. Her collection "Duende" earlier got the 2006 James Laughlin Award and the 2008 Essence Literary Award. "The Body's Question" was the winner of the Cave Canem Poetry Prize in 2002 while "Ordinary Light" became a finalist for the 2015 National Book Award.
Her other honors include receiving the 2004 Rona Jaffe Writers' Award and the 2005 Whiting Writers' Award. Just three years ago, the Academy of American Poets gave her the Academy Fellowship, which is only given to one poet each year. The following year, Smith got the 16th annual Robert Creeley Award. Lastly, in 2016, she won the Columbia University Medal of Excellence.
She was also selected to participate in the Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative. This event recognizes rising artists from all over the globe. She has taught at the City University of New York, the University of Pittsburgh and Columbia University. Below is a video fro PBS NEws Hour featuring Smith: