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Chair & Associate Professor of English
2 East South Street
Galesburg, IL 61401
1. We treat writing as an exercise in living. Our writers spend plenty of time writing and building their writing practice, honed in the workshop—but they also run reading series, work as reporters for the student newspaper or DJs at the campus radio station, study other languages and cultures, start service projects, hold internships, give whole days over to reading, play music, build sets and sculptures and computer code.
2. We publish print and online journals. And we sometimes even use our own printing press. Catch, the oldest continuously published student literary journal in the country and won the 2014 National Program Directors' Prize from the Association of Writers and Writing Programs. All our journals—including Cellar Door, Quiver, and Common Room—are student designed and edited.
3. Our students and faculty regularly win major awards and other kudos. One example is the Nick Adams Short Story Contest, which our students have won more than students from any other competing college. Professor Chad Simpson won the University of Iowa’s John Simmons Short fiction award for his story collection. Professor Gina Franco was awarded the 2019 Canto Mundo Prize for poetry.
4. Our Grads Find Success. Our alumni regularly go on to the nation’s top MFA and Ph.D. programs, edit national journals and run literary presses, publish books, work in journalism, advertising, law, education—any field that demands clear, forceful expression and creative thinking (which is nearly every field). Ander Monson ’97 is an award-winning author of eight books, and founder and editor of DIAGRAM (one of the first online literary journals). Will Boast ’02 won the Rome Prize from the American Academy of Arts and Letters and his book, Power Ballads, won the 2011 Iowa Short Fiction Award. Boast was also a Stegner Fellow at Stanford Alex Keefe ’06 is the engagement editor of WBEZ-FM in Chicago and received a National Headliner Award and Edward R. Murrow Award. While pursuing an MFA, Noah Baldino ‘15 was chosen for a residency at the University of Arizona’s Poetry Center, and was recently named a 2019-20 Stadler Fellow at the Stadler Center for Poetry and Literary Arts. Monica Prince ‘12, a choreopoet, is an assistant professor of activist and performance writing at Susquehanna University.
5. We're good at being humble. However, we will go ahead and admit that we’re one of the most active, accomplished, and engaging undergraduate writing programs in the country. (Coincidentally, Poets and Writers magazine agrees).
Estimated Salary of Alumni with Creative Writing Degrees
The strength of the creative writing program at Knox begins with our faculty—gifted authors, poets, and scholars. These professors love to share their knowledge and bring out the best in each of our students, whether it's in the classroom, during writing workshops, or chatting over a cup of coffee.
They also work closely with students through Caxton Club—a student-run literary organization—to bring high-profile poets, novelists, and essayists to campus for readings and discussions. A few to visit Knox recently include:
Our students also delve into the works of noted authors, poets, and scholars in Seymour Library's special collections, which include such notable holdings as the Hughes Collection of Ernest Hemingway and the Lost Generation—first editions, letters and rare periodical publications of Hemingway, Cummings, Passos, Eliot, Faulkner, Fitzgerald, Joyce, Pound and Stein. Digital and analog collections of video and audio recordings of collections on American and international writers, Shakespeare's plays, and feature films are all available as well.
Works of Galesburg native Carl Sandburg and Edgar Lee Masters, a Knox alumnus, are also among the extensive holdings of Seymour Library—which houses more than 300,000 volumes and 700 periodicals.
We have a policy of recognizing outstanding student work. Each year, the following prizes are awarded by outside judges:
received in one year by The Knox Student