First-Year Writing Prizes Awarded – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \
The HWS Update

First-Year Writing Prizes Awarded

The Writing Colleagues Program and Writing Fellows have selected three students to receive the newly established First-Year Writing Prize.

Emily Fearey ’16, Kristin Ressel ’16 and Brian Schimmel ’16 recently were chosen from a pool of 18 student finalists, all nominated by a First-Year Seminar professor on the basis of exemplarily student writing in an essay assignment during fall 2012. The three prize winners will receive a monetary stipend for their writing achievements.

Fearey, Ressel and Schimmel were recognized earlier this month at a reception in the Seneca Room. During the selection process, the 18 student nominees had the opportunity to work closely with the HWS Writing Colleagues and Fellows to hone their pieces and rework their drafts.

Schimmel’s essay titled “The Complex Anatomy of Wealth, Fear, and Homosexuality in Revolutionary Egypt” received praise from Assistant Professor of Political Science Stacey Philbrick Yadav, with her noting that Schimmel’s paper was “creative and stylistically flawless, and represents the summation of a semester of excellence.”

Ressel and Fearey, who both tied for first place in the William Smith Competition, wrote papers, respectively titled “Am I Crazy,” and “The Evolution of the American Front Lawn: Symbolism and Cultural Significance between the 18th and 21st Centuries.”

At the Colleges, both Writing Colleagues and Writing Fellows bridge connections between students and faculty, facilitating student improvement in writing through nontraditional tutoring methods. Writing Colleagues are placed in a specific class and Writing Fellows work in the Center for Teaching and Learning.

“The First-Year Writing Prize will support a culture of writing, in which we recognize Hobart men and William Smith women for pushing the boundaries of conventional first year writing,” says Hannah Dickinson, the director of the Writing Colleagues Program and co-chair of the competition.

Dickinson is co-organizing the prize with the help of Coordinator of Writing Initiatives Caitlin Caron ’08, MAT ’10, who supervises CTL Writing Fellows.

“The First-Year Writing Prize will celebrate the work of our first-year students and encourage all students to think about the importance of writing at HWS,” Caron says.

Currently, there are plans to publish the student’s final essays in a booklet and to make them available online. These essays promise to be interesting and engaging reads, as they represent the finest writing produced in First-Year Seminars. These students have shown that they are serious thinkers, embracing the notion of living lives of consequence.