The Department is fortunate to have a welcoming and very active English Club run by our undergraduates. Continually seeking inventive ways to strengthen the community of SLU students who love literature and writing, the group is a great way to get to know other students in the Department. As a member of the club, you'll pick up a lot about upcoming classes, ways to study, other interesting groups on campus, coming events, study abroad, and opportunities to take part in the Jesuit tradition of serving those in need.
English Club Events
Members of the English Club attend various Department events together, such as this year's visits by Salman Rusdie, Elie Wiesel, and Tracy Kidder, the African Female Directors Film Series, and the Sheila Nolan Whalen Reading Series in Creative Writing. The Club also has a very full slate of activities of its own. Here are highlights from this year.
Welcome Home party for new and returning English students (in August).
Mentoring middle-school students at Loyola Academy, a high-intensity Jesuit college-preparatory school near the University that gives at-risk children a way out of poverty and a chance to succeed in school (throughout the year).
Studio St. Louis mentoring program for middle-school children interested in writing, composing, and publishing their own magazine (on many Saturday mornings during the year). Saturdays @ The Studio is popular with English Club members and was featured in The University News. Click here to read about it.
Annual student-faculty "Throw-Down Bowling Challenge" (in October). Click here to view recent photos of the event.
Holiday Party, welcome to new faculty, and induction ceremony for new students into Sigma Tau Delta, the national English honorary society (in December).
Spring Awards Ceremony for English faculty and students (in April).
Saturdays @ The Studio
When author Dave Eggers (You Shall Know Our Velocity) founded the organization 826 Valencia in San Francisco, there was no telling how much the project would grow. The nonprofit writing center and tutoring workshop strives to help students aged 8-18 with their writing skills. In addition to its San Francisco location, the project has reached New York, Michigan, Los Angeles, Seattle, Chicago and St. Louis.
Members of the English Club often volunteer with an organization based on the values and ideas of 826 Valencia: Studio STL. According to studiostl.org, the organization's Web site, the group strives to "... help students discover, develop and celebrate their individual voice through writing."
According to Ellen Crowell, the Undergraduate English Club's adviser, the workshops typically run for eight weeks. In these workshops, SLU students help a group of students from various local schools to further their writing abilities. Crowell said that the students would be "trained and helped with certain writing strategies in one-on-one or one-on-two sessions." These workshops cover everything from fiction to poetry to personal essays, which are then compiled into a 'zine that the club publishes for students, their schoolmates, family and friends.
"It's exciting to be pushing out into the community," Crowell said. Studio STL benefits everyone. The members of the Undergraduate English Club share their love of creative writing, work on teaching skills and help children. Those interested in or having questions about joining the Undergraduate English Club, or helping out with Studio STL, should contact Ellen Crowell.
(Adapted from an article by Kelley Dunn)
Student Awards and Publications
The Albert Montesi Award competition recognizes undergraduate achievements in various forms of creative media. It is open to all undergraduates.
The Helen Mandeville Prize in English studies, established in 1993, is named in honor of a faculty member who contributed much to the study of English at Saint Louis University. It is awarded every year to an outstanding senior English major.
As well as various other creative writing publication opportunities, SLU's English Department has several undergraduate creative writing venues. Click on the links below for information.