Student Awards and Achievements

Submitted by Henry J Laufenberg on
Award Winning Graduate Student Brittney Frantece

Student Awards and Achievements

Endowed Scholarships and Fellowships

Through the thoughtful generosity of our alumni and wider community, scores of our deserving graduate students realize their goals and dreams.  The ripple effects of sending our graduates out into the wider world are profound.  In the words of College of Arts and Science Dean of Humanities (and beloved English Professor) Brian Reed:

The humanities open the world to students. They grant access to diverse histories, societies, and languages, inviting students to see the world from a multitude of vantage points. They help students forge vital skills – clear communication, critical thinking, and creativity. In this rapidly changing global landscape, a deep study of the humanities is vital in producing the expansive, nimble thinkers who will help to define the future.

We profusely thank all of you who have chosen to become part of the English Department’s project of both educating students in the Humanities and producing expert teachers of the Humanities.  And if you haven’t yet pledged your support, we invite you to join in by visiting our Support Page where you can explore the wide variety of ways you could specify how your donations could be applied.

As always, the UW English Department thanks you kindly for your support – truly we could not do what we do without help from all of you.  Thank you!


Matthew and Maria Proser Endowed Fellowship in English: Andreas Bassett

Allan and Mary Kollar Endowed Fellowship: Nanya Jhingran (2021-22) and Alexandra Meany (2022-23)

Barbara Bronson Himmelman Fellowship: Nancy Bartley

David Guterson Prize. Erin Strubbe

David A. Robertson Fellowship: Jennifer Cuffman, Nanya Jhingran, Patrick McGowan

Donna Gerstenberger Fellowship: TJ Walker

Elizabeth Kerr Macfarlane Endowed Scholarship: Kathleen Reeves (21-22) and BrittNEY Frantece (22-23)

Eugene Van Buren Prize for Fiction: Evan Barton

Fritz International Fellowship: Joe Wilson

GO-MAP Dissertation Fellowship: Evan Barton and Sophie Johnson

Grace Milliman Pollock Scholarship: Ryan Kingsley

Graduate School Presidential Dissertation Fellowship: Renee Lynch

Hallien Johnson Memorial Prize in Women and Literary Study: John Morgan Baker

Heilman Dissertation Prize: Caleb Knapp and Emily George

Hermione and Louis Brown Graduate Publication Prize: Matthew Poland

Hilen Summer 2021 Research Award: Stephanie Gibbons, Kaelie Giffel, Michaella Gonzales, Jianfeng He, Alex Meany, Janine Sobers

Joan Grayston Poetry Prize: Cass Garrison

Joff Hanauer for Excellence in Western Civilization Graduate Fellows: Megan Butler

Míċeál F. Vaughan Scholarship: Caitlin Postal (2021-22) and Sarah Moore (2022-23)

Mildred Hainer Fellowship: Renee Lynch

Nelson Bentley Prize: Emily Giangiulio and Laurel Wilkinson

Padelford Endowed Fellowship: Kaelah Rose

Phyllis F. and Donald E. Dorset Fellowship: Kaelie Giffel, Caitlin Postal, Gust Burns

Robert R. and Mary Waltz Fellowship: Nina Sobers

Susannah J. McMurphy Dissertation Fellowship: Rachel Schlotfeld


Andrew Hilen Prize for Outstanding Critical Essay: Zeynep Biyikli and Janick Gold

Argentina Daley Endowed Fund: Leanna Naji

Arthur Oberg Award for Poetry: Sarah Brownell

Charles H. Krysieniel Endowed Fund in LGBT Studies: Zoe Hana Mikuta

Charlotte Paul Reese Fiction Award: Alejandra Heringer

Edith K. Draham Scholarship: Indigo Purdy

Edward G. Cox Scholarship: Nikki Talibi

Eilert Anderson Scholarship: Zoe Hana Mikuta

Eugene Van Buren Prize for Fiction: Cathryn Oh

Joan Grayston Poetry Prize: Emerson Judd

John Kimball Woolley and Afton Woolley Crooks Scholarship: Haley Anderson, Shea Formanes, Kailey Kim, Zoe Hana Mikuta, Alice Miller, Priscilla Ren, Lucy Ross, Nikki Talebi, Annie Yang

Lucky Budd Waller Scholarship: Priscilla Ren

Peter L. Thorpe Scholarship: Annie Yang

Robert B. Heilman Scholarship: Haley Anderson

Roger Sale Scholarship: Zoe Hana Mikuta

Tia Val Spinoza Sullivan Scholarship: Lucy Ross


Publications and Appearances, Graduate

Last year, the graduate students of the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Century Studies Graduate Research Cluster organized an online symposium to mark the occasion of the 150th anniversary of George Eliot's great novel Middlemarch (1872).  The online symposium was a wonderful success, and its conference proceedings have just been published in a special issue of the journal George Eliot - George Henry Lewes Studies: Vol 73, no. 2, 2021. The special issue is introduced by Priti Joshi (U Puget Sound) and our own Professor Charles LaPorte (UW). It includes the following articles:

Francesca Colonnese and Nikita Willeford Kastrinos: "Coreading Middlemarch in Pandemic Times: Using Digital Humanities to Build Community at a Distance" (pp. 78-91)

Laura Griffith: "'No Coherent Social Faith and Order': Sainthood and Secularization in Middlemarch and The Daisy Chain" (pp. 123-127)

Alex McCauley: "Dorothea Dreams of Drains" (pp. 128-133)

Matthew Poland: "Middlemarch in Melbourne" (pp. 134-141)

Congratulations to the graduate student organizers!  Special thanks to the Simpson Center for the Humanities and Elliott Stevens, English Studies Librarian, for project support.

Matt Poland talks about the meaning of archives, the nature of their construction, the physical environments that archives engender, and their emancipatory possibilities. You can hear Matt's talk here: Matt Poland's podcast.

Graduate Student E. J. Koh's poems "American Han" and "Pondfields" are published in Poetry Magazine.  You can read an interview with Koh regarding “American Han” here: E.J. Koh's online Poetry Magazine Interview.

And, with Zephyr Press, Koh has also published a translation from Korean of Yi Won's poetry collection The World's Lightest Motorcycle. Read more about the book in this Poetry Magazine feature by Mia You.

Rasheena Fountain has had a blues creative nonfiction piece published in You Are Here: The Journal of Creative Geography’s queer ecologies issue.  Fountain will also have three poems ("At Home in a Mined Body", "Trending as Ghosts", and "Last, Seattle’s Magnificent Forest!" ) in the Spring 2022 issue of swamp pink.

Reggie Kent’s short story "Babi Pongteh" will appear in The Best Asian Stories 2022 (Kitaab Publishing).

Sarah J. Ghasedi's article "Sophia Jex-Blake's secret job as a journalist for The Scotsman" was recently published in The Scotsman. This piece describes an archival discovery that Sarah made while conducting dissertation research in Edinburgh on a Chester Fritz International Research and Study Fellowship. 

Dorian Alexander (along with co-editors Michael Goodrum and Phillip Smith), contributed to and published two collections of essays: Drawing the Past, Vol. 1 - Comics and the Historical Imagination in the United States and Drawing the Past, Vol. 2 - Comics and the Historical Imagination in the World with the University Press of Mississippi.  These are big achievements at any stage of an academic career, let alone while in graduate school.  Great job Dorian!

As featured in UW Magazine article “The Art of Curiosity,” BrittNEY Frantece has curated an exhibit entitled “Queer Imagination” at Seattle’s Jacob Lawrence Gallery.  According to Frantece, the exhibit pivots off the questions “How is this work—or how can I be—curious about alternative ways of being and knowing? And how can this alternative life be sustained in another world?”


Awards and Honors, Graduate

Emily Giangiulio and Marina Bydalek have been awarded the 2022 English Department’s Richard Dunn First-year Teaching Award: Honorable mention went to Kaelah Rose.

Also in the category of teaching awards, MiSun Bishop won the 2022 Joan Webber Award for Outstanding Teaching in the Writing Programs, with honorable mentions to Sarah Ghasedi and Alec Fisher.

BrittNEY Frantece has been selected as a 2022 National Humanities Without Walls-University of Michigan (UM) Pre-Doctoral Career Diversity Workshop Fellow.

Rasheena Fountain received a 2021 Honorable Mention from the Trillium Arts “Miss Sarah” Fellowship for Black Women Writers.

BrittNEY Frantece and Rasheena Fountain were awarded a 2022 Black Opportunity Fund Award to continue their public-facing project The Chorus: Artistic Responses as Academic DiscourseThe Chorus is an interdisciplinary collective space aiming to rethink the student-teacher feedback loop by empowering creative responses to texts across genres (maps, video, literature, and so on). With the award, Brittney and Rasheena plan to add a new social media coordinator to reshape audience experience and engagement for the second season of The Chorus. 

Lydia Heberling decamps for Los Angeles, where she’s been awarded the Chancellor’s Postdoctoral Fellowship at UCLA.

Cass Garison has been awarded the Academy of American Poets Prize.

Celebrated young writer and scholar E.J. Koh adds three more feathers to her well-feathered hat, all for her remarkable memoir The Magical Language of Others:  the 2021 Pacific Northwest Book Award; the 2021 PEN America Literary Awards Longlist for the PEN Open Book Award; the Association for Asian American Studies Book Award, and the 2021 Washington State Book Award in Biography/Memoir.


Simpson Center Awards, Graduate

As per usual, English Department graduate students cleaned up in the Simpson Center Awards category.

Kathleen Escarcha has been awarded a Simpson Center Graduate Research Cluster for work on Transnational Filipinx Diaspora Studies.
Nikita Willeford Kastrinos has been awarded a Simpson Center Graduate Research Cluster for work on Eighteenth and Nineteenth Century Graduate Research.

Caitlin Postal won a Simpson Center Barclay Simpson Scholar in Public Fellowship

Andreas Bassett and Sarah Moore have been awarded a Simpson Center Digital Humanities Summer Fellowship grant for their collaborative work on Marlowe in Sheets.

Gust Burns has been awarded a Simpson Center Society of Scholars summer fellowship to support their work on Dispensation of the Faculties: Prohibition and Radical Persistence through Black Arts and Ant-immanent Critique.

Joseph Wilson and Rebecca Taylor were awarded a 2021-22 Simpson Center Mellon Collaborative Fellowship for Reaching New Publics in Community Colleges

Joseph Concannon and Matt Poland were awarded 2021 Simpson Center Summer Society of Scholars Fellowships for doctoral candidates

Lydia Heberling was awarded a Simpson Center and Undergraduate Research Teaching Associate, 2021 Summer Institute in the Arts and Humanities

Laura Griffith (Eighteenth- and Nineteenth-Century Studies) and Alexandra Meany (Collective for the Study of Racial Capitalism) were awarded 2021-22 Simpson Center Cross-disciplinary Research Cluster Grants

Alec Fisher and Alexandra Meany were awarded a 2021 Simpson Center Mellon Summer Fellowship for Public Projects in the Humanities


Undergraduate Awards and Achievements

Sheharbano Jafry (Biochemistry; English) has been selected to be one of the Husky 100.  The Husky 100 recognizes students who “connect what happens inside and outside of the classroom and apply what they learn to make a difference on campus, in their communities and for the future.”  Jafry expresses that at UW “I have learned how powerful education and medicine can be. In the future, I hope to become an educator and medical doctor so I can combine tools like education and medicine to continue my work of empowering youth, especially those who are underserved.”  Congratulations Sheharbano!