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"As a first generation Latin American, it was different coming here, but I soon realized that I could just be me. St. Andrews is a school for people who like small classes and a close community."
- Anthony Fernandez, Class of '10

Spring Writers' Forum schedule announced for St. Andrews

Laurinburg, N.C. - The Writers' Forum at St. Andrews Presbyterian College will include 10 guest readers and five open mic opportunities during the spring semester.

Free and open to the public, Forums begin at 8 p.m. in Orange Main Lounge unless otherwise noted.

"We begin with the traditional Brunnenburg Night and Welcome Back Open Mic on Jan. 27," said Dr. Ted Wojtasik, faculty advisor of the forum. "This special night allows the students who spent fall semester studying in Brunnenburg Italy with the descendants of Ezra Pound to share some of their creative works."

A more standard open mic session follows on Feb. 3, where students, faculty, staff and members of the community are asked to share their work. Readers are asked to keep their selections to 5-7 minutes to allow for all interested to share. Student host for spring semester, Jessica Bitz-Richards, will keep a sign up list.

Additional open mics are set for Feb. 24, March 10, and April 7.

Poet Whit Griffin will be the first guest reader on Feb. 10. The Memphis native studied poetry at St. Andrews, Bennington College and Brooklyn College. He was an intern for and an assistant to Jonathan Williams' Jargon Society. He has studied with Denver Butson and Theodore Enslin. He co-founded Tight magazine with Andrew Hughes. His first full-length collection of poetry, Pentateuch, was published by Skysill Press in 2010.

St. Andrews will present the Ethel Fortner and Sam Ragan Awards Feb. 17. The pair of winners will join a long list of winners of these awards that recognize contributions to the arts not only through an individual’s own work, but also through the support of the arts community.

Novelist Abigail DeWitt will be featured at the March 17 forum. She has published two novels, Lili and Dogs. She has also had short stories published in The Carolina Quarterly, Salamander and The Journal. A recipient of a Michener Fellowship and a Tyrone Guthrie Residency Fellowship, she earned her B.A. from Harvard University and her M.F.A. from the Iowa Writers Workshop. She has taught creative writing at the Harvard Summer School, The Duke Writers Workshop, Appalachian State University and the University of North Carolina at Asheville. She has also been the visiting writer-in-residence at Lenoir-Rhyne University. She currently leads private workshops and works one-on-one with students around the country. She resides in western North Carolina with her husband and daughter.

Poet Jeff Beam follows on March 24. A native of Kannapolis, Beam has been published widely and given more than 350 readings, lectures and panel discussions throughout North Carolina, Virginia, Canada and Italy. For 12 years he directed, produced and starred in a highly popular program for the Friends of the Library at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill entitled "Winter Stories for Children of All Ages." He has received numerous and awards and grants including an American Library association Stonewall Award nomination, two Pushcart nominations, an IPPY Ten Best Books Award, an Audie Award, an AIGA 50 Best Book Award, a North Carolina Writers Network Blumenthal Writer and Reader Award among others.

On March 31, St. Andrews welcomes poet, writer and teacher Scott Owens from Hickory. His published collections include The Fractured World, Book of Days, Deceptively Like a Sound, and The Persistence of Faith. He has been nominated for two Pushcart Prizes and a Best of the Net Award. He serves as a co-editor for Wild Goose Poetry Review and is the author of Musings, a weekly poetry column in Outlook. He is also a member of the Poetry Council of North Carolina and the manager of the Sam Ragan Poetry Competition.

Phil Ratchford, the 2011 Alan Bunn Memorial Chapbook Award winner, will take center stage at the forum on April 7. Ratchford, a senior from Gastonia, will have his manuscript, Evening Song, published by the St. Andrews College Press this spring.

The spring forum will conclude with the Gilbert-Chappell Distinguished Poets Series featuring Becky Gould Gibson and student poets Rachel Carroll, Bryant Ferrell and Valerie Macon. Gibson is a Professor Emeritus of English and Women's Studies at Guilford College. She has published five collections of poetry: Need Fire, Aphrodite's Daughter, Holding Ground, First Life, and Off-Road Meditations.

For more information about the Writers' Forum, creative writing at St. Andrews or the St. Andrews College Press, call 910-277-5310 or email press@sapc.edu.


About St. Andrews Presbyterian College

An innovative and bold academic venture, the distinctive character of St. Andrews has been marked by an interdisciplinary curriculum, a highly acclaimed college press, an award-winning pipe band, national champion equestrian teams, and first-rate scholarship. In addition to classes on the main campus, adult learners also choose the Center for Adult and Professional Studies opportunities through St. Andrews @ Sandhills and St. Andrews ONLINE.

On Aug. 29, 1958, the merger between Presbyterian Junior College and Flora Macdonald College became official with the formation of St. Andrews Presbyterian College in Laurinburg, N.C. Further information may be obtained by visiting the College's website www.sapc.edu, calling 800-763-0198 or sending an e-mail to info@sapc.edu.


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A branch of Webber International University
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