BMCC Writing and Literature Degree Program Students Win More Than $5,000 in Awards

Winners of the $1,000 prize, Richard Gonzalez, and Amanda Pollock

Winners of the $1,000 prize, Richard Gonzalez, and Amanda Pollock
May 19, 2008

The English Department’s Writing and Literature Degree Program awarded $5,400 to student writers at a ceremony in Richard Harris Terrace. The competitive awards, based on writing submissions in the areas of academic writing, creative writing and journalism, were funded by contributions from the English Department faculty and the BMCC Foundation.

In addition, for the first time this year, the department awarded $500 in the category of news writing. This award was funded by ALM Business Media Inc. Diana Chang won the $400 prize for the ALM Business Media news writing award.

The Keynote speaker at the event was Gregory Pardlo, Assistant Professor of English at Medger Evers College (CUNY), and author of the poetry collection Totem, and winner of the APR/Honickmkan Prize.

Also addressing the students was a Black Education Television (BET) correspondent and author of Never Drank the Kool-Aid, Soul City, and Portable Promised Land, Toure.

Jesse Dean, a former BMCC Valedictorian, winner of the English Faculty writing award, and recent graduate of Columbia University, also addressed the winning students.

Winners of the $1,000 prize were Richard Gonzalez for “MASCAL,” an autobiography based on his time served in Iraq at Abu Graib prison. Amanda Pollock also won $1,000 for her collection of poems.

Winners of the $500 prize were Helene Kim for “Sylvia Plath: Blaming Mother” in the category of academic writing; Phill Lentz for “Self Poor Trait” in the fiction category; Charles Tokieda for “Three Days of Heartbreak,” in autobiography; and Lindsay Toussaint for “Religious Reaffirmation Through Walt Whitman’s Edicts and Female Modernist Poets of the 20th Century” in academic writing.

Winners of the $250 award were Raymond Chao for “Face Me” in the category of drama; Sheryll Franko for “Cell Junkies” in features writing; John Ortiz for “Boots on the Box: Memoirs of a Go-Go Boy” in the category of autobiography; and Ihokvanhkna R. Popa, “My Life in Bits and Pieces” in autobiography.


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