KOKOMO, Ind. — Developing an artistic skill requires not only practice, but also ability to share their work with others. More than 50 north central Indiana high school writers gained the opportunity to showcase their talents — and win college scholarships — at Indiana University Kokomo’s inaugural creative writing contest.
Joe Keener, chairperson of the English and language studies department, said the contest will be held annually, giving students an audience for their work, and a chance to connect with the campus.
“Our purpose is to encourage young people to explore their creativity and self-expression, but also to take ownership and share their work with others,” he said. “These are important steps to developing as an artist. Who knows? The next Maya Angelou, Ernest Hemingway, or Jane Austen might be sitting in our auditorium. We want to foster those budding authors and poets, and bring attention to literary arts.”
Keener noted that all students were invited to read during an open mic session following the awards presentation.
Faculty reviewed the 52 entries, in poetry and prose, and selected the top five in both categories to read their work at the awards ceremony Thursday, November 10. The top entries each received $500 scholarships, renewable for up to three years, while second place winners earned $250 renewable scholarships.
First place winners were Olivia Johnson, Logansport, poetry; and Isabelle McGill, Delphi, prose. Second place winners were Mya Smith, Kokomo, poetry; and Mary Scott, Frankfort, prose.
Their work also will be included in the department’s Field: A Journal of Arts and Science.
Indiana University Kokomo serves north central Indiana.