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National Student Literary Competition Winners Announced

The winners of the 2007-2008 Student Literary Competition, hosted by Miami Dade College and coordinated by Elaine Ludovici were recently announced . The First Place awards were presented to Tamarah Phillips, South Seattle Community College, for a short story titled “My Best Friends Are The Ones I have Given Scabies”; Andrew Gosse, Maricopa County Community College District, for an essay titled “Embracing the Sirens”; Natalia Jimenez, Miami Dade College, for a poem titled “A Note for Mary”; and Melanie Hyers, Lane Community College, for her one-act play titled “Something Different for a Change.”

The Second Place awards were won by Cheri Browne, Lane Community College, for a short story titled, “Nadia's Fire”; Nathan Grosch, Johnson County Community College, for an essay titled “Adventures in the Ordinary”; Janet Burruel, Maricopa County Community College District for her poem titled “Mending”; and Alana Gautreau, Humber College Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning , for a one-act play titled “Random.”

The Third Place awards were given to John Strubberg, St. Louis Community College, for a short story titled “Rube”; Justin Louie, Foothill-De Anza Community College District, for an essay titled “3D Glasses”; Jennifer Ellyn Rolleston, Monroe Community College, for a poem titled “Going to Bed with Ophelia”; and Cristian Larrocha, Miami Dade College, for the one-act play titled, “Tomas, and the Death of His...”

Honorable mention was given to Brandy Laney, Dallas County Community College District, for her essay story titled “My Mother Made Me,” Amber Bromer, Sinclair Community College, for her poem titled “Maps,” and Andrea Evans, Monroe Community College for her one-act play titled “Hate Me.”

Under the leadership of Miami Dade College , the competition included over 50 literary works from League colleges. A catalog of all entries is currently being produced by Miami Dade and will be mailed to all League members this fall.

The jurors for this year's Student Literary Competition were Ana Castillo (Short Story); Reginald Shepherd (Poetry); Che'Rae Adams (One-Act Play); and Alan Cheuse (Personal Essay).

Ana Castillo is a noted poet and novelist whose career spans twenty years, Ana Castillo's first novel, The Mixquiahuala Letters, won the American Book Award from the Before Columbus Foundation and established her as a leading Chicana feminist writer. Since then, she has published a dozen works of fiction, non-fiction, and poetry, including Peel My Love Like an Onion, her sardonic and seductive novel which brought her widespread recognition. She has also edited many works and co-founded Third Woman, a literary magazine, for which she is a contributing editor. Reginald Shepherd is the editor of The Iowa Anthology of New American Poetries and the author of five volumes of poetry, including Some Are Drowning (1994), winner of the 1993 Associated Writing Programs' Award in Poetry. He is the recipient of a 1993 “Discovery”/The Nation Award and of grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Illinois Arts Council, and the Florida Arts Council. Shepherd's poetry has been widely anthologized , including four editions of The Best American Poetry. His collection of literary essays, Orpheus in the Bronx, will be published in the University of Michigan Press Poets on Poetry Series in 2008. Che'Rae Adams has been developing and directing new plays for almost two decades. She is the Producing Artistic Director of the Los Angeles Writer's Center and has been the Development Executive with Playhouse Pictures Studios, Co-Artistic Director of the award winning Road Theatre Company, partner in Two Girls Productions and Managing Producer for the Los Angeles Women's Theatre Festival. Adams has directed the West Coast premiere productions of several new plays. Alan Cheuse is the author of four novels, three collections of short fiction, and the memoir Fall Out of Heaven. As a book commentator, Cheuse is a regular contributor to National Public Radio's "All Things Considered." His short fiction has appeared in The New Yorker, Ploughshares, The Antioch Review, Prairie Schooner, New Letters, The Idaho Review, and The Southern Review, among other places.

The 2008-2009 competition will be hosted by the Anne Arundel Community College and coordinated by Susan Rosen.