The English department’s student awards and the 38th annual Nina Mae Kellogg awards were presented on Wednesday. The afternoon was filled with student awards, a lecture and a reception.
Approximately 100 people were in attendance for the event.
Michael Clark of the department of English presented the awards.
Smith told the audience that the faculty members worked extremely hard reading all the papers for the awards. He noted that the papers were very good.
“We get smarter, thanks to reading these smart papers,” Clark said.
The Nina Mae Kellogg awards honor the life of a woman who had a passion for language and letters. Kellogg’s link with Portland State University was through her husband, Carl Dahlstrom, professor emeritus of English.
Dahlstrom, who died in 1981, established student-aid funds in honor of his wife and his mother. Those funds began the Kellogg awards and lectures.
Dahlstrom’s generosity has helped many Portland State writers continue their careers in the English field.
The Kellogg award is given for academic excellence and demonstrated proficiency in the use of English.
The first prize senior awards went to Alexis Smith, who walked away with three first place positions at the night’s awards. The second prize co-winners were Jeffrey Blackmer and James Stobie.
The Kellogg sophomore awards went to Carolyn Dresselhaus, for first place, and Francie Nevill won second place.
There were several other student awards given at the event besides the Kellogg awards. During the presentation of each award, Clark read a short biography that the students wrote themselves. Some of these were touching and some were amusing.
The first place recipient of the Tom and Phyllis Burnam award, David Ybarra, described himself as the self-proclaimed Donna Summer of the English department in his biography. This award is given to the best work of fiction submitted by an undergraduate student. Peter Young was the second prizewinner of the same award. Loretta Stinson received honorable mention.
The John Redman Memorial award is offered annually for writing completed as a regular course assignment by a freshman. The first place prize went to Robert Johnston. Elizabeth Lehmer was presented with honorable mention.
Smith was awarded first prize to the Frank Andrew Clarke and Helen Clarke Memorial award. Leah White received the second prize. The award is given to undergraduates who submitted excellent work as a regular course assignment.
The Academy of American Poets award is a national award presented for the best poem or group of poems submitted by a student. Membership of the academy is funded by the PSU Foundation.
Smith was a co-winner for first place along with Ann Coleman Stevenson. The honorable mention winners were Matthew Anderson and Tonaya Craft.
The co-winners for the Philip Ford Graduate award were Barbara Simons and Shem Caitlin O’Hailey. The second prize co-winners for the award were Jodi Geren and Lynne Nolan. The Philip Ford Graduate award is given for the best submitted piece of original scholarship or criticism written for graduate credit in an English course during the academic year.
The Thomas Doulis Graduate Fiction and Writing award is given for fiction by a student enrolled at the graduate level in regularly scheduled classes at PSU from spring of the preceding year. Dan DeWeese received first prize. Second prize went to Burky Achilles. Pamela Kenley-Meschino received honorable mention.
The James R. Nattinger award is a graduate teaching fellowship awarded to an outstanding linguistics major. Krisda Chaemsaithong received this honor.
Leslie Moon received the Haystack Writing Program award. The award is given by the Extended and Summer Programs and honors excellence in creative writing by an undergraduate or graduate English major at Portland State University.
Judson Randall, the advisor of the Vanguard and other Portland State publications, presented the Wilma Morrison awards. The awards are given by the Publications Board for excellent writing in The Daily Vanguard. Daniel Powell won for sports writing. In addition, Powell was one of three opinion-writing co-winners. The other recipients of the awards were Jason Damron and Gavin Adair. Kai Hsing won for Arts and Culture writing. Erin Lloyd was the winner for news writing.
A lecture given by Richard Ohmann immediately followed the awards.
Ohmann is an activist in higher education and K-12 education. He is the author of several books, in addition to being the longtime editor of the journal “College English.”
Ohmann’s lecture topic was The Politics of Teaching and Learning since the 1960s and after 9/11.