Today, the White House announced that Deep Center will receive the nation’s highest honor for youth arts programs, the National Arts and Youth Program Award.

Yes, you read that correctly.

The White House considers Deep Center one of the best youth programs in the country!

What does this mean?

It means that Deep young poet André and executive director Dare Dukes are heading to the White House to share the stage with First Lady Michelle Obama on Tuesday, November 17, to receive the award on behalf of Deep.

Even better: André has been afforded a special honor. Tuesday’s East Room ceremony will include remarks by André, who will recount his experience with Deep Center and his personal journey of discovery through poetry. André is the lone youth speaker at the ceremony, and we’re so very proud of his power and accomplishment.

As a friend and supportor, you are a very big part of this award. Thank you for helping to make Deep the best program we can be.

The National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award recognizes the country’s best creative youth development programs for increasing academic achievement, graduation rates and college enrollment by engaging children and youth in the arts and humanities.The awardees—chosen from a pool of more than 350 nominations and 50 finalists—were also recognized for improving literacy and language abilities, communication and performance skills, and cultural awareness.

First presented in 1998, the National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award is the signature program of the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities (PCAH). The awards are presented annually in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), and the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS).

Watch our social media accounts for frequent updates on our trip to DC for the big day!