Students invited to enter EPB Black History Month Poetry Contest

Chattanooga, TN (Press Release) – EPB invites Hamilton County students to compete in the 16th annual EPB Black History Month Poetry Contest to celebrate February as Black History Month.

“We are excited about the opportunity for students to learn more about these events, become inspired by them and to ignite their passion for creative expression,” said Kelvin Boyd, EPB Community Relations Specialist. “We encourage students to write their poem in first person as if they were there as a participant or as a witness during the time period the event occurred.”

Hamilton County students in grades 1-12 in public, private and home schools are encouraged to participate in four age groups. Students can research the following topics and write a poem of their choosing.

  • How did you feel when you read that Bessie Smith had become a world-renowned blues singer after you saw her perform on the streets of Chattanooga in the early 1900’s?
  • What do you think it was like to live in the African American refuge of Chattanooga’s “Camp Contraband” (now Renaissance Park) in the aftermath of the Civil War?
  • What do you think it was like to participate in Nat Turner’s Revolt in 1831?
  • What was the first day of school like after desegregation (1954–1969)?
  • What was daily life like in New York City during the Harlem Renaissance of the 1920’s?
  • How did it feel to see Simone Biles win four gold medals in women’s gymnastics during the 2016 Olympics?
  • Describe your experience on the bus with Rosa Parks when she made her famous political statement in 1955?
  • How did you help Barack Obama prepare for his historical inauguration speech as the first African American President of the United States?
  • What was it like to participate in the March on Washington in 1963?
  • How did it feel to hear about the Tuskegee Airmen claiming 112 aerial victories during World War II?

Students can submit poems until February 7 at 5:00 p.m. EST. Each winning student and their teacher will receive $100 and will be invited to attend the EPB Black History Month Awards Banquet. Please visit for more information.


About EPB 

EPB serves the greater Chattanooga area by providing world-class energy and connectivity solutions as a means of promoting economic development and enhancing quality of life for our community. We deliver electricity to more than 170,000 homes and businesses across our 600 square mile service area which includes most of Hamilton County as well as parts of surrounding counties in both Tennessee and Georgia. In 2010, EPB Fiber Optics, which offers internet, TV, and telephone services, became the first provider in the United States to deliver up to 1 Gig (1,000 Mbps) internet speeds utilizing a community-wide fiber optic network which is accessible to every home and business in its service area. In 2015, EPB became the first, and to date, only American ISP to make up to 10 Gig (10,000 Mbps) internet speeds accessible to all of its residential and commercial customers as a standard offer.

EPB has also utilized its community-wide fiber optic network to deploy the most advanced and highly automated smart grid power management system in the nation. In recognition of EPB’s groundbreaking infrastructure, the Department of Energy and Oak Ridge National Laboratory are utilizing EPB’s smart grid as a national model for researching and developing best practices. EPB is also the first major power distribution utility to earn the USGBC’s PEER certification for having a highly automated, modernized electric power grid.

EPB is an independent board of the City of Chattanooga which began serving customers in 1939. Visit for more information.

Categories: Education, Hamilton County, Local News

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