April 2009 Archives

Congratulations Graduates!

The English Department would like to invite you & yours to join us in celebration of the 2009 English B.A. Commencement.

Open House & Reception
Friday, May 8, 2009
4:00-6:00 p.m.
207A Lind Hall
207 Church Street SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455

The celebration includes graduates and their guests, CLA advisers, and English Department faculty, instructors, and staff.

Please RSVP with the number attending by Monday, May 4, 2009 to Mona Fattah - monaf@umn.edu

English in the News

Daryl Parks (BA honors 1994) was profiled in the Star Tribune Wednesday feature "Professor's life took dramatic turns; now he guides others." After his BA, Parks earned two more degrees at the University of Minnesota (MEd and PhD) and now is associate professor of literature and language at Metropolitan State University. . . . Adjunct assistant professor of English Michael Tortorello, who teaches Introduction to Editing, on April 1 started writing a gardening blog for the New York Times. . . . The Ivory Tower undergraduate literary and arts magazine (see above) is featured in the Minnesota Daily.

MFA Alum Wins Minnesota Book Award

Brian Malloy (MFA 2006) won the Minnesota Book Award for young people's literature for his novel Twelve Long Months (Scholastic). The awards were announced Saturday April 25 at the 21st Minnesota Book Awards gala event in St. Paul. Malloy is currently teaching Introduction to Creative Writing for the Department of English. This year's nominations for the Minnesota Book Awards included books from three Creative Writing professors (Julie Schumacher, Charles Baxter, and Ray Gonzalez), two MFA alumni (Laura Flynn and Malloy), two MA alumna (Margaret Hasse and Alison McGhee), and one BA alumnus (Tim Nolan)

Job Search Workshop - New Time

On Wednesday May 6th at 3:30 pm in Ackerman Hall Room 309 the Department of English will hold a workshop on the job search process for students at all stages in their graduate career. Participants will learn what the job search entails and how they might begin positioning themselves vis-à-vis this important process. Following the general workshop on the job search there will be a meeting for all students going on the job market in fall 2009. This second meeting will begin at the conclusion of the first. Those who are considering going on the market this year should attend both sessions.

Student Awards

The 2009 Gesell Award winners in creative writing are: Josh Morsell, Creative Nonfiction (Honorable Mention: Heather McPherson); Matt Burgess, Fiction; and Brian Laidlaw, Poetry. . . . First-year PhD student Donald Swanbeck (medieval field) won two of the very competitive FLAS fellowships to study Arabic during summer 2009 and academic year 2009-2010. . . . The 2009 ArtWords: Writing at the Weisman Contest winner, Graduate Category, is Brian Laidlaw for "Persephone Creates the Seasons," based on "Cross with Red Heart" by Georgia O'Keeffe. The Undergraduate Category winner is Misha Levchenko for "Justification for the Existence of Liars" based on "World's Fair Mural" by James Rosenquist. . . . Undergraduate Studies student engagement research assistant and English major Josh Capodarco won a President's Student Leadership Award, presented to approximately one-half of one percent of the student body for their exceptional leadership and service to the University of Minnesota and the surrounding community. Congratulations to all!

**Shooting Star** (Powered by FUSE)

Are you a creative writer? Have you been published? Now is your chance.

Shooting Star is now open and looking for submissions of creative work. Shooting star is an online journal that is looking to publish undergraduate students' creative work in all genres. Shooting Start is particularly interested in genre-bending creative works!

Are you interested in submitting? You can send all submissions to fusemn@gmail.com.

You can visit Shooting Star's website by following this link

Award Winners

Charles Baxter's story, "Royal Blue," which appeared in the Spring 2008 American Scholar, has been nominated for a National Magazine Award. The winners will be announced at an event at New York's Lincoln Center on April 30. . . . Congratulations to MFA candidates Shantha Susman and Katie Leo, who were awarded this year's Academy of American Poets James Wright Prize in Poetry. The judge was poet Kathleen Jesme. Leo, who won the 2009 Scribe for Human Rights Fellowship, summarizes her activities in the Human Rights Program Update February issue.

New Faculty Awards Granted

The Imagine Fund Annual Awards this year became available to University of Minnesota faculty for research in the arts, design, and the humanities through a generous grant from the McKnight Foundation and new internal reallocations from the University of Minnesota Graduate School and the Office of the Vice President for Research. Of the 217 awards representing $651,000 in support, 16 awards went to English faculty. Our 2009 winners: Timothy Brennan, Tony C. Brown, Michael Dennis Browne, Evelyn Ch'ien, Siobhan Craig, Lois Cucullu, Maria Damon, Genevieve Escure, Ray Gonzalez, Michael Hancher, Qadri Ismail, Ellen Messer-Davidow, Paula Rabinowitz, Katherine Scheil, Charles Sugnet, and Omise'eke Natasha Tinsley.

Stories from abroad = Prize???

Have you been abroad? Are you currently abroad? Now is your chance to tell everyone about your experience abroad.

The English Department is proud to sponsor a new blog entitled Tales from the Road Tales from the Road is an online resources for undergraduate English majors, minors and International students to contribute creative works pertaining to their experience "abroad." We are now accepting student submissions of poetry, fiction, non-fiction and all other genres that pertain to students international experience.

Did we mention that we are hosting a contest with a grand prize? All students that turn in submissions by May 6th will be entered into a contest to be judged for one of three prizes. The top literary submissions (as judged by our office) will receive a $50 gift card to the University of Minnesota book store. Two runner-up prizes will be given to second and third place submissions (this time its a $15 gift card to the University of Minnesota book store.)

Are you interested? You can find more information by visiting the website Tales from the Road Please send any questions concerning submission guidelines to englmaj@umn.edu with "Tales from the Road questions" in the subject line.

We encourage all current undergraduates with experience abroad to submit!

Academy of American Poets James Wright Prize

The winners of this year's Academy of American Poets James Wright Prize are Shantha Susman and Katie Leo. Both Shantha and Katie are current graduate students here in the Department of English!

Congratulations Shantha and Katie!

Shantha was awared the prize for her two poems "Franklin" and "Umbilicus" and Katie was selected for her two poems "Miss Saigon Wants a Well-deserved Vacation" and "Oppenheimer Dreams and Island."

The judge was poet Kathleen Jesme. Jesme is the author of three booksof poetry:
The Plum-Stone Game - 2009 from Ahsahta Press
Motherhouse, 2005, winner of the 2004 Lena-Miles Wever Todd Poetry Prize from Pleiades Press
Fire Eater - 2003 from University of Tampa Press.

Have you had your creative work published?

Have you had your creative work published recently? Whether it was in an online journal, literary magazine, etc., you should feel proud of your work!

We are interested in recognizing students with published work by posting their information on our website! If you have had your work published within the last year please send an e-mail to englmaj@umn.edu with "Student publications" in the subject line and outline what you published, where you published it (please include a link to the online resources if available) along with your year in school, major(s) and minor(s) and full name.

We look forward to hearing from all of our accomplished writers!

Congratulations to Mark Brenden

Congratulations to English Major Mark Brenden for being published in the online literary magazine Pike Magazine! Mark had a short piece of fiction published in April's installment of Pike Magazine. Check his story entitled "Until the Dancer Comes in a Short Short Dress" by clicking on this link.

Mark's work has been described as "dotted with fresh adverbs and adjectives, a talent for which must be attributed to more than simply one's native land."

Congratulations to Mark (yet again) for his success, courage and drive!


Have you ever heard of Pike Magazine? Pike Magazine is an online literary magazine created and run by University of Minnesota English alumnus Brooks Doherty! Brook's work, along with Mark's story, are just a few great examples of what English majors can do with their education!

Are you a creative writer too? You can submit works for publication by visiting Pike Magazine's website and clicking on the "Submit your Pike Art."

Are you a leader?

The Fellowship of Undergraduate Students of English (FUSE) is looking for new leadership for next year's group. Have you always thought of yourself as a leader but haven't had the time to get involved with FUSE? Now is your chance. FUSE is accepting applications from any undergraduate English major or minor that is interested in leadership. You can find a list of the officer positions below:

All Officer Duties
-Regular attendance of FUSE meetings is required. There are approximately 10-15 meetings per semester (negotiable based on class or prior obligations). Officers should be involved or up to date in some shape or form.

-Attendance of Officer meetings at designated by the president (maybe once a month or 3-4 times per semester).

Individual Officer Duties Breakdown
-Collaborate with other officers to make sure tasks are being accomplished.
-Coordinate officer meetings.
-Support/problem solve and oversee tasks
-Oversee the election of new officers for following year
-Maintain contact with English Department as needed for collaboration on activities including Book Exchange or other projects.

Event Coordinator:
-Create and implement events for FUSE
-Coordinate set up/take down for each event
-Work with PR officer to make sure event is well advertised.
-Events can include but are not limited to: FUSE movie nights, workshops, live performance attendance, etc.

Meeting Manager:
-Schedule meeting time and place for weekly Fuse meetings.
-Help guide discussion and topics of meetings.

Public Relations/Marketing:
-Market student group by creating fliers or other forms of advertising.
-Manage Facebook group, blog, and e-mail list.
-Work with all other officers to get information about FUSE programs that should be included in all forms of communication.

Additional Officer (as needed)
-Assist in any tasks needed from other officers.
-Participate in idea generation.
-Help fill in for roles when others are unable to.

To Apply
-Turn in a list of ALL positions that you are interested as well as a paragraph detailing your interest in the position as well as why you think you would do well at this position.
-Please include your name, e-mail, and phone number.
-Applications can be turned in to Stephen or Josh at FUSE meetings or in Lind 227.
-Applications are due by April 24th at 4pm.

Are you interested in FUSE? You can check them out by visiting http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#/group.php?gid=17727084512.


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