Student Involvement

Microphone on stage

2017 Keynote | Rudy Francisco

Rudy Francisco is one of the most recognizable names in spoken word poetry. He was born, raised and still resides in San Diego, California. At the age of 21, Rudy completed his bachelor's in psychology and decided to continue his education by pursuing a mater's in organizational studies.

As an artist, Rudy is an amalgamation of social critique, introspection, honesty and humor. He uses personal narratives to discuss the politics of race, class, gender and religion while simultaneously pinpointing and reinforcing the interconnected nature of human existence.

Rudy seeks to create work that promotes healthy dialogue, discourse and social change. Furthermore, Rudy has made conscious efforts to cultivate young poets and expose the youth to the genre of spoken word poetry via coaching, workshops and performances at preparatory schools and community centers. Rudy has also received admiration from institutions of higher education. He has conducted guest lectures and performances at countless colleges and universities across the nation.

Rudy has shared stages with prominent artists such as Gladys Knight, Jordin Sparks, Musiq Soul Child, and Jill Scott. He is also the co-host of the largest poetry venue in San Diego, competes in domestic and international poetry slam competitions and had the honor of being nominated for an NAACP Image Award.

Ultimately, Rudy's goal is to continue to assist others in harnessing their creativity while cultivating his own. Rudy is the 2009 National Underground Poetry Slam Champion, 2010 Individual World Poetry Slam Champion and appeared on TV One’s “Verses and Flow.”

Rudy Francisco