Mathews Scholarship Endowed
The family of the late Jim Mathews has generously endowed a scholarship for graduate study in English in his name. The Dr. James W. Mathews Distinguished Endowed English Scholarship for Graduate Studies will be given annually to either a graduating UWG senior who has declared his or her intention to attend graduate school at UWG or a current graduate student in good standing. The recipient will be determined by English faculty.
Dr. Mathews came to West Georgia as professor of English and chair of the Humanities Division in 1960. In 1973 he was named chair of the English department, a position he held until his retirement in 1992. During his final years as chair, he hired the present senior members of the department. His continuing impact on the department is also evidenced by the James W. Mathews Fund, an endowment he generously established several years ago to support English department activities; the James W. Mathews Award, given in his honor for the best graduate paper written during the academic year; and of course the work of the many alumni who benefited from his influence during his 32 years of teaching at West Georgia.
During all the years he chaired the university’s largest department, Jim was also one of its most productive members. He had an active and ongoing research agenda before we began to use the phrase as commonly as we do now. His work on the literary history of New England, and particularly the Transcendentalists, had an impact on the broader scholarly community through his publications in learned journals, but it also enriched the experience of students in his own classes and the broader university community through public lectures he often gave. He was an estimable force on several fronts in the greater Carrollton community, particularly in leadership roles at St. Margaret’s Episcopal Church and the Carrollton Rotary Club. When time came to write the official history of the University, Jim was called upon to do it. It would be hard to imagine anyone else. He was also a passionate and, according to the late Jim Dahl, an impressively hard-working gardener.
The first award was announced at the Department’s annual Awards Program on April 1. The recipient was Rod McRae.
Upcoming Undergrad Conference
The Fourth Annual Undergraduate Conference will be held this year on April 9 th in the Pafford building. The Conference is an opportunity for undergraduate students to share papers and various other works with fellow students and faculty. In years past, the Conference has hosted panels on film theory, creative writing, gender studies, individual authors, and a multitude of other literary subjects. The Conference also reserves a few panels each year for First Year Writing students to display their own work on the shared texts. This event is a great learning experience for students as well as the perfect opportunity to display the wonderful work that students create during courses. We should all support our students during this chance for them to exhibit their hard work and grow as scholars!
Hipchen Awarded Fulbright to India
Last Fall, Dr. Emily Hipchen received a grant from the J. William Fulbright Commission to live and teach in India as a part of the prestigious Fulbright Scholar Program. The grant provided full funding for travel, accommodation, and other living expenses as she temporarily relocated to the city of Kanpur, where she held a visiting lectureship at the India Institute of Technology.
The Fulbright Program was founded after World War II by U.S. Senator J. William Fulbright. His aim in creating the program was to promote international peace and understanding by way of educational exchange. Since 1948, when the first Fulbrighters traveled to The Philippines and the United Kingdom, the program has expanded exponentially, placing first-rate teachers and scholars like Hipchen in 144 countries around the globe.
While at the India Institute of Technology in Kanpur, Dr. Hipchen taught courses in Creative Writing as well as in Literature, focusing on American creative nonfiction texts such as Richard Rodriguez’s Hunger of Memory. She completed her six-week lectureship in December 2008 and, gladly, returned safely to West Georgia.
(see "Things Retained from India" on page 3 for Dr. Hipchen's account of India.)