Annual Awards Program Honors Students for Excellence in English

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

The English Department held its annual awards program on Tuesday in the Campus Center Ballroom to honor outstanding achievement by undergraduate and graduate students for the 2012-2013 school year. The event also spotlighted excellence from faculty members at UWG with the presentation of three English Teaching Awards. After accepting their awards, honorees were given the opportunity to give a brief speech about their experience with the department, while thanking their teachers, family and friends who helped them along the way.

“This has been a wonderful experience,” said Joy Coles, a UWG junior who was awarded one of the two awards for Most Outstanding English Education Majors. “The faculty here has been very welcoming and they have treated me like the younger students.”

Coles shared with the audience in her thank you speech that she started her education 35 years ago, but stopped while raising seven children and being married. “I would take online classes, maybe one or two a year until I finally got to the point where I decided I really needed to get going with finishing my education, so I came to the University of West Georgia.”

The recipients of the undergraduate and graduate scholarships were also recognized, in addition to three faculty members from the English department for their excellence in teaching. The program inductees of Sigma Tau Delta, an English Honors Society that commends achievements made in the study of English language and literature at the undergraduate and graduate levels, were recognized at the beginning of the program.

Below is a list of the students, awards and honorees for the 2013 English Annual Awards Program.


Recognition of Gordon Watson Award Recipient
Megan Bell

Insight Awards
Seniors: Valerie Yearta, Sean Jepson, Stephen Foster Smith
Juniors: Ember Zimmerman, Lucas Chance, Ali Martin

Most Promising New English Majors
Jonathan Mark Hendrix, Craig Alexander Thompson

Most Outstanding English Education Majors
Senior: Michele Drane
Junior: Joy Coles

Robert L. Snyder Award for Most Outstanding Contribution to a Senior Seminar
Rebecca Harris (Fall 2012) Mary Catherine
Maria Doyle (Fall 2012): Valerie Yearta
Debra MacComb (Spring 2012): Jadon Palladino
Patrick Erben (Spring 2012): Jenna Harvie
Alison Umminger (Spring 2012): Benjamin Alexander-Crossan

Marion L. Fisher Award in American Literature
Kassie Bettis

Most Outstanding English Minor
Gabrielle Jade Gammans

Most Outstanding Film Studies Minor
Megan Moody

Most Outstanding Creative Writing Minor
Diamond Forde

Kay Magenheimer Poetry Prize
Jo Brachman

Ben W. Griffith Fiction Prize
Jonathan Miller

Creative Nonfiction Prize
Jenna Harvie

Carrollton Creative Writers Club Awards
First Place Poetry Melissa Sullivan, “Stained Glass Jesus”
Honorable Mention Poetry Diamond Forde, “Invitations”
First Place Prose Jo Brachman, “Hair”
Honorable Mention Prose Andrew Vinyard, “The Roman”
Award for Poetry or Prose by a Female Student Megan Bell, “Bread and Roses, Too”
Ruby L. Young Memorial Award for Prose by a Male Student Sean Thomas Jepson, “The Day Mr. Wilder Left the Page”


Jane B. Hill Award for Excellence in First Year Writing
Tiara Edwards

The Stanley Parkman Excellence in Writing Award
Makayla Wade

The Stanley Parkman Excellence in Tutoring Award
FYW Instructor: Burke Nixon
Gradute Student: Pamela Murphy


Willie Maude Thompson Scholarship in English
Megan Bell

Dr. George W. Walker English Scholarship
Camille Land, Sarah Robertson

Mary Anne (Sugar) Wilson Goreau DeVillier Scholarship
Diamond Forde


Most Outstanding Graduate Students
Pamela Murphy, Time Payne

Dr. James W. Mathews Prize for Best Graduate Student Essay
Joshua Black


Dr. James W. Mathews Distinguished Endowed English Scholarship for Graduate Studies
Joshua Black

Dr. Corliss Hines Edwards, Jr. Memorial Scholarship
Jenna Harvie, Sarah Hendricks