2014 Shakespeare Festival Winners
First Prize: “Equality and Identity: Two Ideas of Importance in Shakespeare’s Plays”
Second Prize: “The Very Tragical Comedies of Gothic Romance: Villain-Heroes in Shakespeare, Godwin, and Radcliffe”
Third Prize: “'I am not what I am’: A Psychoanalytic Interpretation of Iago’s Will to Power”
Bridget Pyle (2016) will be presenting her paper, "Beautiful Features: Navigating the Uncanny Valley in Mary Shelley's Frankenstein" at the NASSR 2015: Romanticism & Rights, which is sponsored by University of Manitoba and The University of Winnipeg.
Sunny Dickson (2016) presented her paper, "Patriarchy and the Isolated Female in Jackson’s We Have Always Lived in the Castle" at the Louisville Conference for Literature and Culture since 1900.
Anna Worm (2014) successfully defended her master's thesis, "God Made Me Thisaway': Mary Wilkins Freeman, Flannery O'Connor, and Religiosity as Challenge to Heteronormativity" with distinction in March, 2014. She is currently in a doctoral program at Florida State University where she has also been offered a teaching assistantship.
Rachel Leigh Curtis (2014) was awarded a Presidential Research Grant with which she was able to study the archival materials of Jewish American author, Tillie Olson, at the Stanford University Libraries as she conducted her thesis research. Grant awards of up to $1,000 are available to support research tied to the completion of an aspect of the applicant's graduate degree, generally the completion of a thesis, dissertation, or final scholarly project.
April D. Best's thesis, "Geographical, Linguistic, Social, and Experiential Demarcation: The River in Edwidge Danticat's The Farming of Bones" was selected from six submitted to the Biology, Cell and Molecular Biology, and English graduate programs for consideration. Her work makes a substantial contribution to the understanding of post-colonial literature, dealing with contemporary issues with broad appeal.
Simon Powers-Schaub, published an article in SPRING: The Journal of the E.E Cummings Society, "His Dream, Her Reality: Two Principles of Mental Functioning in E. E. Cummings' Him." Spring: The Journal of the E. E. Cummings Society 19 (2012): 17-26.
Jennifer Furner (2012) currently teaches at Baker College in Muskegon as adjunct faculty and works full time with Girl Scouts of Michigan. In February of 2013 she chaired a panel at the Louisville Conference on Literature and Culture. The panel, "Identity and Sacrifice in the Works of Ralph Ellison," included her paper ("The Human Scapegoat in the fiction of Shirley Jackson and Ralph Ellison"), as well as two papers by GVSU M. A. students: Brittany Winters ("Keep This Nigger-Boy Running": Misdirection and the White Trickster in Invisible Man"), and Ben Redes ("Self-lynching: The Symbols of Dehumanization in 'A Party Down at the Square'").
Ann Hayward (2010) serves as an Acquisitions Associate at the GVSU Mary Idema Pew Library. While in the program, Ann presented a paper on John Donne at the 2008 Conference of the Sixteenth Century Society. When approached and complimented by a scholar in attendance who suggested that she dig even deeper, Ann expanded her ideas into a master's thesis. Later, in response to an assignment by Dr. Jim Persoon, she wrote two essays that were later included in Persoon's book (co-authored with Dr. Robert Watson), The Facts on File Companion to British Poetry, 1900 to the Present.
Meg Lockard (2009) Meg began a Ph. D. program in Curriculum and Instruction at New Mexico State University with a focus in Educational Technologies this summer (2014). Before that she worked as an adjunct instructor in the GVSU Writing Department, the GRCC English Department, and taught remotely for Ashford University and Corinthian Colleges.