Breaking News: Muhlenberg announces winners of writing and journalism awards, honors seniors

Muhlenberg announces winners of writing and journalism awards, honors seniors

The creative writing and journalism program hosted its first in-person awards dinner since the pandemic began.

By: Grace Oddo ’22
Thursday, May 5, 2022 9:12 AM



Lecturer in Media and Communication Sara Vigneri, Associate Professor of English Literature and Writing Linda Miller and Visiting Assistant Professor of Drama and Writer-in-Residence Gabriel Dean at the writing awards ceremony. Photo by Grace Oddo ’22

On Monday, April 25, Muhlenberg student writers gathered in the Great Hall to enjoy a meal and hear from the Edwin W. Miller and The weekly Muhlenberg Journalism Award. This is the first time the awards ceremony has been held in person since the pandemic began.

“It all went so well,” says Linda Miller, associate professor of English literatures and writing and director of the creative writing and journalism program. “Programs like these are so successful because they build a sense of community. We can all come together and celebrate what we do, which is to write.

The Edwin W. Miller Awards, named after the late editor and publisher with a passion for higher education, recognize students who have done outstanding work in the categories of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and theater. Students can submit pieces of their choice, which are reviewed by faculty as well as a professional writer. In the same way, The weekly Muhlenberg The Journalism Awards honor the editors of the College’s student newspaper. This year, the categories were Reports, Reports and Opinions/Personal Essays. All winners received cash prizes and comments from the judges.

At the end of the awards ceremony, Miller presented seniors with Ally Duvak ’22, major in English and Creative Writing and double minor in French and Francophone Studies, and Caya Greenspan-Layman ’22, major in Sociology and minor in Creative Writing. , with the Excellence in Writing Award, which is given to two seniors who have done exceptional work. Duvak’s passion for playwriting has been praised; for Greenspan-Layman, his honors thesis. Additionally, all graduating seniors were sent off with a yellow rose and a hug from Miller.

The recipients of each award are:

Edwin W. Miller Writing Award

Awards in Fiction
First Place: HoneyJo Yanko ’25 for “I Used to Have My Mom’s Eyes”
Second place (tie): Emma Klaus ’23 for “Lost City” and Peyton Sloan ’23 for “Canary”
Honorable mentions: Avital Zemel ’22 for “A Sculpture of Her Body after Andy Warhol by Alice Neel”, Sarah Wedeking ’24 for “Now You See Me” and Morgan Bishop ’22 for “Breathe”

Poetry Prize
First place (tie): Sophie Naghski ’24 for “Blooming Earthward” and Oyinkansola Adebajo ’24 for “Not Your NBC”
Second place (tie): Hannah Weil ’23 for “The Three Stages of Small Town Trapping and Other Poems”, Margaret Silbaugh ’23 for “Things I Find in Boxes in the Basement”, and Nico Correa ’24 for “Mapping My Hometown with Static Radio »
Honorable mentions: Hope Biddle ’23 for “The Likelihood of Being Forgotten & Other Poems” and Haylie La Testa ’23 for “I Am the Witch”

Non-Fiction Awards
First place (tie): Libby Bergier-Pesin ’23 for “Welcome Home & Other Essays”, Caya Greenspan-Layman ’22 for “Double-Barreled Blues” and Carina Filemyr ’23 for “Series of Sequential Shifts”
Honorable mentions: Nora Dryden ’24 for “Schrodinger’s Cat”, Carly Giacoio ’22 for “Purple Planet” and Hannah Michelson ’22 for “Podophobia & Podophilia”

Theater Awards
First place: Bird Palermo ’25 for “The Mud”
Second place (tie): Lauren Silverstein ’23 for “Is He Gay?” and Amira Jackson ’24 for “The Blessed Kent of the Amobis”
Honorable mentions: Hannah Michelson ’22 for “Wedding Day”, Taylor Cornelius ’22 for “Ivory” and Daliah Bernstein ’21 for “Agnoshtick”

Excellence in Writing Award
Ally Duvak ’22 and Caya Greenspan-Layman ’22

The weekly Muhlenberg Journalism Award

News Reporting Awards
First place: “Allentown’s Housing Crisis: The Fight for Affordable Housing” by Kat Dickey ’22
Second place: “From Jail to ‘Berg: The Jose Rivera Story” by Alex Blum ’22

Awards in Feature Articles
First place: “The sad fate of recyclable plasticsby Amanda Clark ’22
Second place: “Our lives will never be the same” by Katie Behling ’22

Opinion/Personal Essay Awards
First place: “Considering the ethics of family vloggers” by Brianna Kovit ’23
Second place: “We deserve to smile too” by Mustafa Hall ’23


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